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Title: The Koran

Translator: George Sale

Release Date: February, 2005  [EBook #7440]
[This file was first posted on April 30, 2003]
[Most recently updated September 26, 2004]

Edition: 09

Language: English

Character set encoding: Latin1


Note: This eBook still needs better formatting, especially for
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The Koran.

Thanks to Brett Zamir for work on this eBook.




Translated into English from the Original Arabic,









NOTWITHSTANDING the great honour and respect generally and deservedly paid to 
the memories of those who have founded states, or obliged a people by the 
institution of laws which have made them prosperous and considerable in the 
world, yet the legislator of the Arabs has been treated in so very different a 
manner by all who acknowledge not his claim to a divine mission, and by 
Christians especially, that were not your lordship's just discernment 
sufficiently known, I should think myself under a necessity of making an 
apology for presenting the following translation.

   The remembrance of the calamities brought on so many nations by the 
conquests of the Arabians may possibly raise some indignation against him who 
formed them to empire; but this being equally applicable to all conquerors, 
could not, of itself, occasion all the detestation with which the name of 
Mohammed is loaded.  He has given a new system of religion, which has had 
still greater success than the arms of his followers, and to establish this 
religion made use of an imposture; and on this account it is supposed that he 
must of necessity have been a most abandoned villain, and his memory is become 
infamous.  But as Mohammed gave his Arabs the best religion he could, as well 
as the best laws, preferable. at least, to those of the ancient pagan 
lawgivers, I confess I cannot see why he deserves not equal respect-though not 
with Moses or Jesus Christ, whose laws came really from Heaven, yet, with 
Minos or Numa, notwithstanding the distinction of a learned writer, who seems 
to think it a greater crime to make use of an imposture to set up a new 
religion, founded on the acknowledgment of one true God, and to destroy 
idolatry, than to use the same means to gain reception to rules and 
regulations for the more orderly practice of heathenism already established.

   To be acquainted with the various laws and constitutions of civilized 
nations, especially of those who flourish in our own time, is, perhaps, the 
most useful part of knowledge: wherein though your lordship, who shines with 
so much distinction in the noblest assembly in the world, peculiarly excels; 
yet as the law of Mohammed, by reason of the odium it lies under, and the 
strangeness of the language in which it is written, has been so much 
neglected.  I flatter myself some things in the following sheets may be new 
even to a person of your lordship's extensive learning; and if what I have 
written may be any way entertaining or acceptable to your lordship, I shall 
not regret the pains it has cost me.

   I join with the general voice in wishing your lordship all the honour and 
happiness your known virtues and merit deserve, and am with perfect respect,

					MY LORD,
				Your lordship's most humble
						And most obedient servant,
								GEORGE SALE.





OF the life of GEORGE SALE, a man of extensive learning, and considerable 
literary talent, very few particulars have been transmitted to us by his 
contemporaries.  He is said to have been born in the county of Kent, and the 
time of his birth must have been not long previous to the close of the 
seventeenth century.  His education he received at the King's School, 
Canterbury.  Voltaire, who bestows high praise on the version of the Korān, 
asserts him to have spent five-and-twenty years in Arabia, and to have 
acquired in that country his profound knowledge of the Arabic language and 
customs.  On what authority this is asserted it would now be fruitless to 
endeavour to ascertain.  But that the assertion is an erroneous one, there can 
be no reason to doubt; it being opposed by the stubborn evidence of dates and 
facts.  It is almost certain that Sale was brought up to the law, and that he 
practised it for many years, if not till the end of his career.  He is said, 
by a co-existing writer, to have quitted his legal pursuits, for the purpose 
of applying himself to the study of the eastern and other languages, both 
ancient and modern.  His guide through the labyrinth of the oriental dialects 
was Mr. Dadichi, the king's interpreter.  If it be true that he ever 
relinquished the practice of the law, it would appear that he must have 
resumed it before his decease; for, in his address to the reader, prefixed to 
the Korān, he pleads, as an apology for the delay which had occurred in 
publishing the volume, that the work "was carried on at leisure times only, 
and amidst the necessary avocations of a troublesome profession."  This alone 
would suffice to show that Voltaire was in error.  But to this must be added, 
that the existence of Sale was terminated at an early period, and that, in at 
least his latter years, he was engaged in literary labours of no trifling 
magnitude.  The story of his having, during a quarter of a century, resided in 
Arabia, becomes, therefore, an obvious impossibility, and must be dismissed to 
take its place among those fictions by which biography has often been 
encumbered and disgraced.
   Among the few productions of which Sale is known to be the author is a part 
of "The General Dictionary," in ten volumes, folio.  To the translation of 
Bayle, which is incorporated with this voluminous work, he is stated to have 
been a large contributor.
   When the plan of the Universal History was arranged, Sale was one of those 
who were selected to carry it into execution.  His coadjutors were Swinton, 
eminent as an antiquary, and remarkable for absence of mind; Shelvocke, 
originally a naval officer; the well informed, intelligent, and laborious 
Campbell; that singular character, George Psalmanazar; and Archibald Bower, 
who afterwards became an object of unenviable notoriety.  The portion of the 
history which was supplied by Sale comprises "The Introduction, containing the 
Cosmogony, or Creation of the World;" and the whole, or nearly the whole, of 
the succeeding chapter, which traces the narrative of events from the creation 
to the flood.  In the performance of his task, he displays a thorough 
acquaintance with his subject; and his style, though not polished into 
elegance, is neat and perspicuous.  In a French biographical dictionary, of 
anti-liberal principles, a writer accuses him of having adopted a system 
hostile to tradition and the Scriptures, and composed his account of the 
Cosmogony with the view of giving currency to his heretical opinions.  Either 
the accuser never read the article which he censures, or he has wilfully 
misrepresented it; for it affords the fullest contradiction to the charge, as 
does also the sequent chapter; and he must, therefore, be contented to choose 
between the demerit of being a slanderer through blundering and reckless 
ignorance, or through sheer malignity of heart.
   Though his share in these publications affords proof of the erudition and 
ability of Sale, it probably would not alone have been sufficient to preserve 
his name from oblivion.  His claim to be remembered rests principally on his 
version of the Korān, which appeared in November, 1734, in a quarto volume, 
and was inscribed to Lord Carteret.  The dedicator does not disgrace himself 
by descending to that fulsome adulatory style which was then too frequently 
employed in addressing the great.  As a translator, he had the field almost 
entirely to himself; there being at that time no English translation of the 
Mohammedan civil and spiritual code, except a bad copy of the despicable one 
by Du Ryer.  His performance was universally and justly approved of, still 
still remains in repute, and is not likely to be superseded by any other of 
the kind.  It may, perhaps, be regretted, that he did not preserve the 
division into verses, as Savary has since done, instead of connecting them 
into a continuous narrative.  Some of the poetical spirit is unavoidably lost 
by the change.  But this is all that can be objected to him.  It is, I 
believe, admitted, that he is in no common degree faithful to his original; 
and his numerous notes, and Preliminary Discourse, manifest such a perfect 
knowledge of Eastern habits, manners, traditions, and laws, as could have been 
acquired only by an acute mind, capable of submitting to years of patient 
   But, though his work passed safely through the ordeal of criticism, it has 
been made the pretext for a calumny against him.  It has been declared, that 
he puts the Christian religion on the same footing with the Muhammedan; and 
some charitable persons have even supposed him to have been a disguised 
professor of the latter.  The origin of this slander we may trace back to the 
strange obliquity of principles, and the blind merciless rage which are 
characteristic of bigotry.  Sale was not one of those who imagine that the end 
sanctifies the means, and that the best interests of mankind can be advanced 
by violence, by railing, or by deviating form the laws of truth, in order to 
blacken an adversary.  He enters into the consideration of the character of 
Mohammed with a calm philosophic spirit; repeatedly censuring his imposture, 
touching upon his subterfuges and inventions, but doing justice to him on 
those points on which the pretended prophet is really worthy of praise.  The 
rules which, in his address to the reader, he lays down for the conversion of 
Mohammedans, are dictated by sound sense and amiable feelings.  They are, 
however, not calculated to satisfy those who think the sword and the fagot to 
be the only proper instruments for the extirpation of heresy.  That he places 
Islamism on an equality with Christianity is a gross falsehood.  "As 
Mohammed," says he, "gave his Arabs the best religion he could, preferable, at 
least, to those of the ancient pagan lawgivers, I confess I cannot see why he 
deserves not equal respect, though not with Moses or Jesus Christ, whose laws 
came really from heaven, yet with Minos or Numa, notwithstanding the 
distinction of a learned writer, who seems to think it a greater crime to make 
use of an imposture to set up a new religion, founded on the acknowledgment of 
one true God, and to destroy idolatry, than to use the same means to gain 
reception to rules and regulations for the more orderly practice of heathenism 
already established."  This, and no more, is "the very head and front of his 
offending;" and from this it would, I think, be difficult to extract any proof 
of his belief in the divine mission of Mohammed.  If the charge brought 
against him be not groundless, he must have added to his other sins that of 
being a consummate hypocrite, and that, too, without any obvious necessity; he 
having been, till the period of his decease, a member of the Society for the 
Promoting of Christian Knowledge.
   In 1736 a society was established for the encouragement of learning.  It 
comprehended many noblemen, and some of the most eminent literary men of that 
day.  Sale was one of the founders of it, and was appointed on the first 
committee.  The meetings were held weekly, and the committee decided upon what 
works should be printed at the expense of the society, or with its assistance, 
and what should be the price of them.  When the cost of printing was repaid, 
the property of the work reverted to the author.  This establishment did not, 
I Imagine, exist for any length of time.  The attention of the public has been 
recently called to a plan of a similar kind.
   Sale did not long survive the carrying of this scheme into effect.  He died 
of a fever, on the 13th of November, 1736, at his house in Surrey-street, 
Strand, after an illness of only eight days, and was buried at St. Clement 
Danes.  He was under the age of forty when he was thus suddenly snatched from 
his family, which consisted of a wife and five children.  Of his sons, one was 
educated at New College, Oxford, of which he became Fellow, and he was 
subsequently elected to a Fellow-ship in Winchester College.  Sale is 
described as having had "a healthy constitution, and a communicative mind in a 
comely person."  His library was valuable, and contained many rare and 
beautiful manuscripts in the Persian, Turkish, Arabic, and other languages; a 
circumstance which seems to show that poverty, so often the lot of men whose 
lives are devoted to literary pursuits, was not one of the evils with which he 
was compelled to encounter.

							R. A. DAVENPORT.

[from 1891 version]


THERE is surely no need to-day to insist on the importance of a close study of 
the Korān for all who would comprehend the many vital problems connected with 
the Islamic World; and yet few of us, I imagine, among the many who possess 
translations of this book have been at pains to read it through.  It must, 
however, be borne in mind that the Korān plays a far greater rōle among the 
Muhammadans than does the Bible in Christianity in that it provides not only 
the canon of their faith, but also the text-book of their ritual and the 
principles of their Civil Law.
	It was the Great Crusades that first brought the West into close touch 
with Islam, but between the years 1096 and 1270 we only hear of one attempt to 
make known to Europe the Sacred Book of the Moslems, namely, the Latin version 
made in 1143, by Robert of Retina (who, Sale tells us, was an Englishman), and 
Hermann of Dalmatia, on the initiative of Petrus Venerabilis, the Abbot of 
Clugny, which version was ultimately printed by T. Bibliander in Basel in 
1543, nearly a hundred years after the fall of Constantinople.
	During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, several translations 
appeared both in Latin and in French, and one of the latter, by André du Ryer, 
was translated into English by Alexander Ross in 1649.  But by far the most 
important work on the Korān was that of Luigi Marracci which was published in 
Padua in 1698.
	George Sale's translation first appeared in November, 1734, in a quarto 
volume; in 1764 it was first printed in medium octavo, and the reprint of 1825 
contained the sketch of Sale's life by Richard Alfred Davenant which has been 
utilized in the article on Sale in the Dictionary of National Bibliography.  
The Chandos Classics edition in crown octavo was first issued in 1877.
	Soon after the death of the Prophet, early Muhammadan theologians began 
to discuss, not only the correct reading of the text itself, but also to work 
out on the basis of first-hand reports the story connected with the revelation 
of each chapter.  As the book at present stands in its original form the 
chapters are arranged more or less according to their respective length, 
beginning with the longest; except in the case of the opening chapter, which 
holds a place by itself, not only in the sacred book of Islam, corresponding 
as it does in a manner to our Pater Noster, but also in its important 
ceremonial usages.  The presumed order in which the various chapters were 
revealed is given in the tabular list of Contents, but it may be mentioned 
that neither Muhammadan theologians, nor, in more recent times, European 
scholars, are in entire agreement upon the exact chronological position of all 
the chapters.
	It is well for all who study the Korān to realize that the actual text 
is never the composition of the Prophet, but is the word of God addressed to 
the Prophet; and that in quoting the Korān the formula is "He (may he be 
exalted) said" or some such phrase.  The Prophet himself is of course quoted 
by Muhammadan theologians, but such quotations refer to his traditional 
sayings known as "Hadīs," which have been handed down from mouth to mouth with 
the strictest regard to genealogical continuity.
	It would probably be impossible for any Arabic scholar to produce a 
translation of the Korān which would defy criticism, but this much may be said 
of Sale's version: just as, when it first appeared, it had no rival in the 
field, it may be fairly claimed to-day that it has been superseded by no 
subsequent translations.  Equally remarkable with his translation is the 
famous Preliminary Discourse which constitutes a tour de force when we 
consider how little critical work had been done in his day in the field of 
Islamic research.  Practically the only works of first-class importance were 
Dr. Pocock's Specimen Historio Arabum, to which, in his original Address to 
the Reader, Sale acknowledges his great indebtedness, and Maracci's Korān.
	In spite of the vast number of eminent scholars who have worked in the 
same field since the days of George Sale, his Preliminary Discourse still 
remains the best Introduction in any European language to the study of the 
religion promulgated by the Prophet of Arabia; but as Wherry says: "Whilst 
reading the Preliminary Discourse as a most masterly, and on the whole 
reliable, presentation of the peculiar doctrines, rites, ceremonies, customs, 
and institutions of Islam, we recognize the fact that modern research has 
brought to light many things concerning the history of the ancient Arabs which 
greatly modify the statements made in the early paragraphs."
	For many centuries the acquaintance which the majority of Europeans 
possessed of Muhammadanism was based almost entirely on distorted reports of 
fanatical Christians which led to the dissemination of a multitude of gross 
calumnies.  What was good in Muhammadanism was entirely ignored, and what was 
not good, in the eyes of Europe, was exaggerated or misinterpreted.
	It must not, however, be forgotten that the central doctrine preached by 
Muhammad to his contemporaries in Arabia, who worshipped the Stars; to the 
Persians, who acknowledged Ormuz and Ahriman; the Indians, who worshipped 
idols; and the Turks, who had no particular worship, was the unity of God, and 
that the simplicity of his creed was probably a more potent factor in the 
spread of Islam than the sword of the Ghazis.
	Islam, although seriously affecting the Christian world, brought a 
spiritual religion to one half of Asia, and it is an amazing circumstance that 
the Turks, who on several occasions let loose their Central Asian hordes over 
India, and the Middle East, though irresistible in the onslaught of their 
arms, were all conquered in their turn by the Faith of Islam, and founded 
Muhammadan dynasties.
	The Mongols of the thirteenth century did their best to wipe out all 
traces of Islam when they sacked Baghdad, but though the Caliphate was 
relegated to obscurity in Egypt the newly founded Empires quickly became 
Muhammadan states, until finally it was a Turk who took the title of Caliph 
which has been held by the house of Othman ever since.
	Thus through all the vicissitudes of thirteen hundred years the Korān 
has remained the sacred book of all the Turks and Persians and of nearly a 
quarter of the population of India.  Surely such a book as this deserves to be 
widely read in the West, more especially in these days when space and time 
have been almost annihilated by modern invention, and when public interest 
embraces the whole world.
	It is difficult to decide to what extent Sale's citations in the notes 
represent first-hand use of the Arabic commentators, but I fear that the 
result of a close inquiry only points to very little original research on his 
part.  He says himself in his Address to the Reader: "As I have no opportunity 
of consulting public libraries, the manuscripts of which I have made use 
throughout the whole work have been such as I had in my own study, except only 
the Commentary of Al Baidhāwi" . . . which "belongs to the library of the 
Dutch Church in Austin Friars."
	Now with regard to these manuscripts which Sale had in his "own study" 
we happen to possess first-hand information, for a list of them was printed by 
the executor of his will under the following title: "A choice collection of 
most curious and inestimable manuscripts in the Turkish, Arabic and Persian 
languages from the library of the late learned and ingenious Mr. George Sale.  
Which books are now in the possession of Mr. William Hammerton Merchant in 
Lothbury where they may be seen on Wednesdays and Fridays till either they are 
sold or sent abroad.  N.B. These MSS. are to be sold together and not 
separately."  They were purchased in the first instance by the Rev. Thomas 
Hunt of Oxford for the Radcliffe Library, and they are now permanently housed 
in the Bodleian Library.
	The British Museum possesses a copy of this list which is drawn up in 
English and French on opposite pages and comprises eighty-six works in all.  
The list contains very few Arabic works of first-rate importance, but is rich 
in Turkish and Persian Histories.  What is most significant, however, is the 
fact that it contains hardly any of the Arabic works and none of the 
Commentaries which are referred to on every page of Sale's translation of the 
	I have therefore been forced to the conclusion that with the exception 
of Al-Baidhāwi, Sale's sources were all consulted at second hand; and an 
examination of Marracci's great work makes the whole matter perfectly clear.  
Sale says of Marracci's translation that it is "generally speaking very exact; 
but adheres to the Arabic idiom too literally to be easily understood . . . by 
those who are not versed in the Muhammadan learning.  The notes he has added 
are indeed of great use; but his refutations, which swell the work to a large 
volume, are of little or none at all, being often unsatisfactory, and 
sometimes impertinent.  The work, however, with all its faults is very 
valuable, and I should be guilty of ingratitude, did I not acknowledge myself 
much obliged thereto; but still being in Latin it can be of no use to those 
who understand not that tongue."
	Such is Sale's own confession of his obligation to Marracci-but it does 
not go nearly far enough.  A comparison of the two versions shows that so much 
had been achieved by Marracci that Sale's work might almost have been 
performed with a knowledge of Latin alone, as far as regards the quotations 
from Arabic authors.  I do not wish to imply that Sale did not know Arabic, 
but I do maintain that his work as it stands gives a misleading estimate of 
his original researches, and that his tribute to Marracci falls far short of 
his actual indebtedness.
	It must be mentioned that Marracci not only reproduced the whole of the 
Arabic text of the Korān but furthermore gives the original text and the 
translation of all his quotations from Arabic writers.  It is indeed a 
profoundly learned work and has never received the recognition it deserves.  
Marracci had at his disposal rich collections of MSS. belonging to the 
Libraries of Italy.  How he learnt his Arabic we do not know.  Voltaire says 
he was never in the East.  He was confessor to Pope Innocent XI, and his work 
which appeared in Padua in 1698 is dedicated to the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold 
I.  By way of Introduction to his Korān Marracci published a companion folio 
volume called Prodromus which contains practically all that was known in his 
day regarding Muhammad and the Religion of Islam.
	It may in any case be claimed that the present work presents to the 
Western student all the essentials of a preliminary study of Islam: for Sale's 
translation and footnotes will give him as clear an idea as can be obtained, 
without laborious years of study in Arabic, of what is regarded by so many 
millions of men from Fez to the Far East as the revealed word of God and the 
unshakable basis of their faith.
	George Sale was born about 1697 and died in 1736.  Every biography calls 
attention to the statement made by Voltaire in his Dictionnaire Philosophique 
to the effect that Sale spent over twenty years among the Arabs.  I think this 
must have been a lapsus calami on Voltaire's part, because it is unlikely that 
he would have invented such a story.  Sale must also have been well versed in 
Hebrew, both biblical and post-biblical, as his numerous allusions to 
Rabbinical writings testify.
	Two years after the publication of his great work Sale died in Surrey 
Street, Strand, his age being then under forty.  In 1720 he had been admitted 
a student of the Inner Temple-son of Samuel Sale, citizen and merchant of 
London-and the same year the Patriarch of Antioch had sent Solomon Negri 
(Suleiman Alsadi) to London from Damascus to urge the Society for Promoting 
Christian Knowledge, then established in the Middle Temple, to issue an Arabic 
New Testament for the Syrian Christians.  It is surmised that Negri was Sale's 
first instructor in Arabic, though Dadichi, the King's Interpreter, a learned 
Greek of Aleppo, guided him, we are told, "through the labyrinth of oriental 
	Whatever Sale may have known before-and he certainly had the gift of 
languages-it is on the Society's records that on August 30, 1726, he offered 
his services as one of the correctors of the Arabic New Testament and soon 
became the chief worker on it, besides being the Society's solicitor and 
holding other honorary offices.  That translation of the New Testament into 
Arabic was followed by the translation of the Korān into English.
	In this edition the proper names have been left for the most part as in 
the original, but the reader must understand that in Sale's day there was a 
freedom in regard to oriental orthography that allowed of many variations.  In 
spite, however, of the want of a scientific system, Sale's transcription is on 
the whole clear, and far less confusing than those adopted by contemporary 
Anglo-Indian scholars, who utterly distorted Muhammadan names-including place 
names in India-by rendering the short a by u and so forth.  As a few examples 
of names spelled in more than one way, the correct modern way being given 
first, we have Al-Qor'įn, Coran, Korān, etc.; Muhammad, Mohammed, Mahomet, 
etc.; Al-Baidhāwi, Al-Beidāwi; Muttalib, Motalleb, Motaleb, etc.; Jalāl ud-
Dīn, Jallālo'ddīn; Anas, Ans; Khalīfa, Caliph, Khalif, etc.
	It is only within quite recent times that scholars have troubled to 
render each letter of the Arabic alphabet by an equivalent and distinct letter 
of the Roman alphabet-and although no particular system has been universally 
adopted by European orientalists, every writer has some system by which any 
reader with a knowledge of Arabic is able to turn back every name into the 
original script.  The chief advantage of any such system is that a distinction 
is made between the two varieties of s, k, and t, and the presence of the 
illusive Arabic letter 'ayn is always indicated.

Sir Edward Denison Ross
C.I.E., Ph.D., ETC.

[Written apparently sometime after 1877]



I IMAGINE it almost needless either to make an apology for publishing the 
following translation, or to go about to prove it a work of use as well as 
curiosity.  They must have a mean opinion of the Christian religion, or be but 
ill grounded therein, who can apprehend any danger from so manifest a forgery: 
and if the religious and civil institutions of foreign nations are worth our 
knowledge, those of Mohammed, the lawgiver of the Arabians, and founder of an 
empire which in less than a century spread itself over a greater part of the 
world than the Romans were ever masters of, must needs be so; whether we 
consider their extensive obtaining, or our frequent intercourse with those who 
are governed thereby.  I shall not here inquire into the reasons why the law 
of Mohammed has met with so unexampled a reception in the world (for they are 
greatly deceived who imagine it to have been propagated by the sword alone), 
or by what means it came to be embraced by nations which never felt the force 
of the Mohammedan arms, and even by those which stripped the Arabians of their 
conquests, and put an end to the sovereignty and very being of their Khalīfs: 
yet it seems as if there was something more than what is vulgarly imagined in 
a religion which has made so surprising a progress.  But whatever use an 
impartial version of the Korān may be of in other respects, it is absolutely 
necessary to undeceive those who, from the ignorant or unfair translations 
which have appeared, have entertained too favourable an opinion of the 
original, and also to enable us effectually to expose the imposture; none of 
those who have hitherto undertaken that province, not excepting Dr. Prideaux 
himself, having succeeded to the satisfaction of the judicious, for want of 
being complete masters of the controversy.  The writers of the Romish 
communion, in particular, are so far from having done any service in their 
refutations of Mohammedism, that by endeavouring to defend their idolatry and 
other superstitions, they have rather contributed to the increase of that 
aversion which the Mohammedans in general have to the Christian religion, and 
given them great advantages in the dispute.  The Protestants alone are able to 
attack the Korān with success; and for them, I trust, Providence has reserved 
the glory of its overthrow.  In the meantime, if I might presume to lay down 
rules to be observed by those who attempt the conversion of the Mohammedans, 
they should be the

same which the learned and worthy Bishop Kidder* has prescribed for the 
conversion of the Jews, and which may, mutatis mutandis, be equally applied to 
the former, notwithstanding the despicable opinion that writer, for want of 
being better acquainted with them, entertained of those people, judging them 
scarce fit to be argued with.  The first of these rules is, To avoid 
compulsion; which, though it be not in our power to employ at present, I hope 
will not be made use of when it is.  The second is, To avoid teaching 
doctrines against common sense; the Mohammedans not being such fools (whatever 
we may think of them) as to be gained over in this case.  The worshipping of 
images and the doctrine of transubstantiation are great stumbling-blocks to 
the Mohammedans, and the Church which teacheth them is very unfit to bring 
those people over.  The third is, To avoid weak arguments: for the Mohammedans 
are not to be converted with these, or hard words.  We must use them with 
humanity, and dispute against them with arguments that are proper and cogent.  
It is certain that many Christians, who have written against them, have been 
very defective this way: many have used arguments that have no force, and 
advanced propositions that are void of truth.  This method is so far from 
convincing, that it rather serves to harden them.  The Mohammedans will be apt 
to conclude we have little to say, when we urge them with arguments that are 
trifling or untrue.  We do but lose ground when we do this; and instead of 
gaining them, we expose ourselves and our cause also.  We must not give them 
ill words neither; but must avoid all reproachful language, all that is 
sarcastical and biting: this never did good from pulpit or press.  The softest 
words will make the deepest impression; and if we think it a fault in them to 
give ill language, we cannot be excused when we imitate them.  The fourth rule 
is, Not to quit any article of the Christian faith to gain the Mohammedans.  
It is a fond conceit of the Socinians, that we shall upon their principles be 
most like to prevail upon the Mohammedans: it is not true in matter of fact.  
We must not give up any article to gain them: but then the Church of Rome 
ought to part with many practices and some doctrines.  We are not to design to 
gain the Mohammedans over to a system of dogma, but to the ancient and 
primitive faith.  I believe nobody will deny but that the rules here laid down 
are just: the latter part of the third, which alone my design has given me 
occasion to practise, I think so reasonable, that I have not, in speaking of 
Mohammed or his Korān, allowed myself to use those opprobrious appellations, 
and unmannerly expressions, which seem to be the strongest arguments of 
several who have written against them.  On the contrary, I have thought myself 
to treat both with common decency, and even to approve such

				*  In his Demonstr. of the Messias, Part III. chap. 2.

particulars as seemed to me to deserve approbation: for how criminal soever 
Mohammed may have been in imposing a false religion on mankind, the praises 
due to his real virtues ought not to be denied him; nor can I do otherwise 
than applaud the candour of the pious and learned Spanhemius, who, though he 
owned him to have been a wicked impostor, yet acknowledged him to have been 
richly furnished with natural endowments, beautiful in his person, of a subtle 
wit, agreeable behaviour, showing liberality to the poor, courtesy to every 
one, fortitude against his enemies, and above all a high reverence for the 
name of GOD; severe against the perjured, adulterers, murderers, slanderers, 
prodigals, covetous, false witnesses, &c., a great preacher of patience, 
charity, mercy, beneficence, gratitude, honouring of parents and superiors, 
and a frequent celebrator of the divine praises.*
	Of the several translations of the Korān now extant, there is but one 
which tolerably represents the sense of the original; and that being in Latin, 
a new version became necessary, at least to an English reader.  What 
Bibliander published for a Latin translation of that book deserves not the 
name of a translation; the unaccountable liberties therein taken and the 
numberless faults, both of omission and commission, leaving scarce any 
resemblance of the original.  It was made near six hundred years ago, being 
finished in 1143, by Robertus Retenensis, an English-man, with the assistance 
of Hermannus Dalmata, at the request of Peter, Abbot of Clugny, who paid them 
well for their pains.
	From this Latin version was taken the Italian of Andrea Arrivabene, 
notwithstanding the pretences in his dedication of its being done immediately 
from the Arabic;? wherefore it is no wonder if the transcript be yet more 
faulty and absurd than the copy.?
	About the end of the fifteenth century, Johannes Andreas, a native of 
Xativa in the kingdom of Valencia, who from a Mohammedan doctor became a 
Christian priest, translated not only the Korān, but also its glosses, and the 
seven books of the Sonna, out of Arabic into the Arragonian tongue, at the 
command of Martin Garcia,§ Bishop of Barcelona and Inquisitor of Arragon.  
Whether this translation were ever published or not I am wholly ignorant: but 
it may be presumed to have been the better done for being the work of one bred 
up in the 

	*  Id certum, naturalibus egregič dotibus instructum Muhammedera, forma 
pręstanti, ingenio calido, moribus facetis, ac prę se ferentem liberalitatem 
in egenos. comitatem in singulos, fortitudinem in hostes, ac prę cęteris 
reverentiam divini nominis.-Severus fuit in perjuros, adulteros, homicidas, 
obtrectatores, prodigos, avaros, falsos testes, &c.  Magnus idem patientię, 
charitatis, misericordię, beneficentię, gratitudinis, honoris in parentes ac 
superiores pręco, ut et divinarum laudum.  Hist. Eccles. Sec. VII. c. 7, lem. 
5 and 7.
	?  His words are: Questo libro, che gią havevo ą commune utilitą di 
molti fatto dal proprio testo Arabo tradurre nella nostra volgar lingua 
Italiana, &c.  And afterwards; Questo č l'Alcorano di Macometto, il quale, 
come ho gia detto, ho fatto dal suo idioma tradurre, &c.
	?  Vide Jos. Scalig. Epist. 361 et 362; et Selden. de Success. ad Leges 
Ebręor. p. 9.
	§  J. Andreas, in Pręf. ad Tractat. suum de Confusione Sectę Mahometanę.

Mohammedan religion and learning; though his refutation of that religion, 
which has had several editions, gives no great idea of his abilities.
	Some years within the last century, Andrew du Ryer, who had been consul 
of the French nation in Egypt, and was tolerably skilled in the Turkish and 
Arabic languages, took the pains to translate the Korān into his own tongue: 
but his performance, though it be beyond comparison preferable to that of 
Retenensis, is far from being a just translation; there being mistakes in 
every page, besides frequent transpositions, omissions, and additions,* faults 
unpardonable in a work of this nature.  And what renders it still more 
incomplete is, the want of Notes to explain a vast number of passages, some of 
which are difficult, and others impossible to be understood, without proper 
explications, were they translated ever so exactly; which the author is so 
sensible of that he often refers his reader to the Arabic commentators.
	The English version is no other than a translation of Du Ryer's, and 
that a very bad one; for Alexander Ross, who did it, being utterly 
unacquainted with the Arabic, and no great master of the French, has added a 
number of fresh mistakes of his own to those of Du Ryer; not to mention the 
meanness of his language, which would make a better book ridiculous.
	In 1698, a Latin translation of the Korān, made by Father Lewis 
Marracci, who had been confessor to Pope Innocent XI., was published at Padua, 
together with the original text, accompanied by explanatory notes and a 
refutation.  This translation of Marracci's, generally speaking, is very 
exact; but adheres to the Arabic idiom too literally to be easily understood, 
unless I am much deceived, by those who are not versed in the Mohammedan 
learning.  The notes he has added are indeed of great use; but his 
refutations, which swell the work to a large volume, are of little or none at 
all, being often unsatisfactory, and sometimes impertinent.  The work, 
however, with all its faults, is very valuable, and I should be guilty of 
ingratitude, did I not acknowledge myself much obliged thereto; but still, 
being in Latin, it can be of no use to those who understand not that tongue.
	Having therefore undertaken a new translation, I have endeavoured to do 
the original impartial justice; not having, to the best of my knowledge, 
represented it, in any one instance, either better or worse than it really is.  
I have thought myself obliged, indeed, in a piece which pretends to be the 
Word of GOD, to keep somewhat scrupulously close to the text; by which means 
the language may, in some places, seem to express the Arabic a little too 
literally to be elegant English: but this, I hope, has not happened often; and 
I flatter myself that the

*  Vide Windet. de Vitā Functorum statu, Sect. IX.

style I have made use of will not only give a more genuine idea of the 
original than if I had taken more liberty (which would have been much more for 
my ease), but will soon become familiar: for we must not expect to read a 
version of so extraordinary a book with the same ease and pleasure as a modern 
	In the Notes my view has been briefly to explain the text, and 
especially the difficult and obscure passages, from the most approved 
commentators, and that generally in their own words, for whose opinions or 
expressions, where liable to censure, I am not answerable; my province being 
only fairly to represent their expositions, and the little I have added of my 
own, or from European writers, being easily discernible.  Where I met with any 
circumstance which I imagined might be curious or entertaining, I have not 
failed to produce it.
	The Preliminary Discourse will acquaint the reader with the most 
material particulars proper to be known previously to the entering on the 
Korān itself, and which could not so conveniently have been thrown into the 
Notes.  And I have taken care, both in the Preliminary Discourse and the 
Notes, constantly to quote my authorities and the writers to whom I have been 
beholden; but to none have I been more so than to the learned Dr. Pocock, 
whose Specimen Historię Arabum is the most useful and accurate work that has 
been hitherto published concerning the antiquities of that nation, and ought 
to be read by every curious inquirer into them.
	As I have had no opportunity of consulting public libraries, the 
manuscripts of which I have made use throughout the whole work have been such 
as I had in my own study, except only the Commentary of al Beidāwi and the 
Gospel of St. Barnabas.  The first belongs to the library of the Dutch church 
in Austin Friars, and for the use of it I have been chiefly indebted to the 
Reverend Dr. Bolten, one of the ministers of that church: the other was very 
obligingly lent me by the Reverend Dr. Holme, Rector of Hedley in Hampshire; 
and I take this opportunity of returning both those gentlemen my thanks for 
their favours.  The merit of al Beidāwi's commentary will appear from the 
frequent quotations I have made thence; but of the Gospel of St. Barnabas 
(which I had not seen when the little I have said of it in the Preliminary 
Discourse,* and the extract I had borrowed from M. de la Monnoye and M. 
Toland,? were printed off), I must beg leave to give some further account.
	The book is a moderate quarto, in Spanish, written in a very legible 
hand, but a little damaged towards the latter end.  It contains two hundred 
and twenty-two chapters of unequal length, and four hundred

			*  Sect. IV. p. 58.		?  In not. ad cap. 3, p. 38

and twenty pages; and is said, in the front, to be translated from the 
Italian, by an Arragonian Moslem, named Mostafa de Aranda.  There is a preface 
prefixed to it, wherein the discoverer of the original MS., who was a 
Christian monk, called Fra Marino, tells us that having accidentally met with 
a writing of Irenęus (among others), wherein he speaks against St. Paul, 
alleging, for his authority, the Gospel of St. Barnabas, he became exceeding 
desirous to find this gospel; and that GOD, of His mercy, having made him very 
intimate with Pope Sixtus V., one day, as they were together in that Pope's 
library, his Holiness fell asleep, and he, to employ himself, reaching down a 
book to read, the first he laid his hand on proved to be the very gospel he 
wanted: overjoyed at the discovery, he scrupled not to hide his prize in his 
sleeve, and on the Pope's awaking, took leave of him, carrying with him that 
celestial treasure, by reading of which he became a convert to Mohammedism.
	This Gospel of Barnabas contains a complete history of Jesus Christ from 
His birth to His ascension; and most of the circumstances in the four real 
Gospels are to be found therein, but many of them turned, and some artfully 
enough, to favour the Mohammedan system.  From the design of the whole, and 
the frequent interpolations of stories and passages wherein Mohammed is spoken 
of and foretold by name, as the messenger of God, and the great prophet who 
was to perfect the dispensation of Jesus, it appears to be a most barefaced 
forgery.  One particular I observe therein induces me to believe it to have 
been dressed up by a renegade Christian, slightly instructed in his new 
religion, and not educated a Mohammedan (unless the fault be imputed to the 
Spanish, or perhaps the Italian translator, and not to the original compiler); 
I mean the giving to Mohammed the title of Messiah, and that not once or twice 
only, but in several places; whereas the title of the Messiah, or, as the 
Arabs write it, al Masīh, i.e., Christ, is appropriated to Jesus in the Korān, 
and is constantly applied by the Mohammedans to Him, and never to their own 
prophet.  The passages produced from the Italian MS. by M. de la Monnoye are 
to be seen in this Spanish version almost word for word.
	But to return to the following work.  Though I have freely censured the 
former translations of the Korān, I would not therefore be suspected of a 
design to make my own pass as free from faults: I am very sensible it is not; 
and I make no doubt that the few who are able to discern them, and know the 
difficulty of the undertaking, will give me fair quarter.  I likewise flatter 
myself that they, and all considerate persons, will excuse the delay which has 
happened in the publication of this work, when they are informed that it was 
carried on at leisure times only, and amidst the necessary avocations of a 
troublesome profession.







I.-Of the Arabs before Mohammed; or, as they express it, in the Time of
	Ignorance; their History, Religion, Learning, and Customs	1
II.-Of the State of Christianity, particularly of the Eastern Churches, and of
	Judaism, at time of Mohammed's appearance; and of the methods taken
	by him for the establishing his Religion, and the circumstances which
	concurred thereto	25
III.-Of the Korān itself, the Peculiarities of that Book; the manner of its 
	written and published, and the General Design of it	44
IV.-Of the Doctrines and positive Precepts of the Korān which relate to Faith 
	Religious Duties	54
V.-Of certain Negative Precepts in the Korān	95
VI.-Of the Institutions of the Korān in Civil Affairs	103
VII.-Of the Months commanded by the Korān to be kept Sacred; and of the 
	apart of Friday for the especial service of God	114
VIII.-Of the principal Sects among the Mohammedans; and of those who have pre-
	tended to Prophecy among the Arabs, in or since the time of Mohammed





1. Entitled, The Preface, or Introduction; containing 7 verses	1
2. Entitled, The Cow; containing 286 verses	2
3. Entitled, The Family of Imrān; containing 200 verses	32
4. Entitled, Women; containing 175 verses	53
5. Entitled, The Table; containing 120 verses	73
6. Entitled, Cattle; containing 165 verses	89
7. Entitled, Al Araf; containing 206 verses	105
8. Entitled, The Spoils; containing 76 verses	125
9. Entitled, The Declaration of Immunity; containing 139 verses	134
10. Entitled, Jonas; containing 109 verses	150
11. Entitled, Hud; containing 123 verses	158
12. Entitled, Joseph; containing 111 verses	169
13. Entitled, Thunder; containing 43 verses	181
14. Entitled, Abraham; containing 52 verses	186
15. Entitled, Al Hejr; containing 99 verses	191
16. Entitled, The Bee; containing 128 verses	195
17. Entitled, The Night Journey; contianing 110 verses	206
18. Entitled, The Cave; containing 111 verses	216
19. Entitled, Mary; containing 80 verses	227
20. Entitled, T. H.; containing 134 verses	233
21. Entitled, The Prophets; containing 112 verses	242
22. Entitled, The Pilgrimage; containing 78 verses	250
23. Entitled, The True Believers; containing 118 verses	257
24. Entitled, Light; containing 74 verses	262
25. Entitled, Al Forkan; containing 77 verses	271
26. Entitled, The Poets; containing 227 verses	276
27. Entitled, The Ant; containing 93 verses	283
28. Entitled, The Story; containing 87 verses	289
29. Entitled, The Spider; containing 69 verses	297
30. Entitled, The Greeks; containing 60 verses	302
31. Entitled, Lokmān; containing 34 verses	306
32. Entitled, Adoration; containing 29 verses	309
33. Entitled, The Confederates; containing 73 verses	312
34. Entitled, Saba; containing 54 verses	321
35. Entitled, The Creator; containing 45 verses	326
36. Entitled, Y. S; containing 83 verses	330

37. Entitled, Those who rank themselves in Order; containing 182 verses	334
38. Entitled, S.; containing 86 verses	339
39. Entitled, The Troops; containing 75 verses	344
40. Entitled, The True Believer; containing 85 verses	350
41. Entitled, Are distinctly explained; containing 54 verses	355
42. Entitled, Consultation; containing 53 verses	359
43. Entitled, The Ornaments of Gold; containing 89 verses	362
44. Entitled, Smoke; containing 57 verses	367
45. Entitled, The Kneeling; containing 36 verses	369
46. Entitled, Al Ahkaf; containing 35 verses	371
47. Entitled, Mohammed; containing 38 verses	374
48. Entitled, The Victory; containing 29 verses	377
49. Entitled, The Inner Apartments; containing 18 verse	381
50. Entitled, K.; containing 45 verses	383
51. Entitled, The Dispersing; containing 60 verses	385
52. Entitled, The Mountain; containing 48 verses	387
53. Entitled, The Star; containing 61 verses	389
54. Entitled, The Moon; containing 55 verses	391
55. Entitled, The Merciful; containing 78 verses	394
56. Entitled, The Inevitable; containing 99 verses	396
57. Entitled, Iron; containing 29 verses	399
58. Entitled, She who disputed; containing 22 verses	402
59. Entitled, The Emigration; containing 24 verses	404
60. Entitled, She who is tried; containing 13 verses	407
61. Entitled, Battle Array; containing 14 verses	409
62. Entitled, The Assembly; containing 11 verses	410
63. Entitled, The Hypocrites; containing 11 verses	412
64. Entitled, Mutual Deceit; contianing 18 verses	413
65. Entitled, Divorce; containing 12 verses	414
66. Entitled, Prohibition; containing 12 verses	415
67. Entitled, The Kingdom; containing 30 verses	418
68. Entitled, The Pen; containing 52 verses	419
69. Entitled, The Infallible; containing 52 verses	421
70. Entitled, The Steps; containing 44 verses	423
71. Entitled, Noah; containing 28 verses	424
72. Entitled, The Genii; containing 28 verses	426
73. Entitled, The Wrapped up; containing 19 verses	427
74. Entitled, The Covered; containing 55 verses	429
75. Entitled, The Resurrection; containing 40 verses	431
76. Entitled, Man; containing 31 verses	432
77. Entitled, Those which are sent; containing 50 verses	434
78. Entitled, The News; containing 40 verses	435
79. Entitled, Those who tear forth; containing 46 verses	436
80. Entitled, He Frowned; containing 42 verses	437
81. Entitled, The Folding up; containing 29 verses	438
82. Entitled, The Cleaving in Sunder; containing 19 verses	439
83. Entitled, Those who give Short Measure or Weight; containing 36 verses
84. Entitled, The Rending in Sunder; containing 23 verses	441
85. Entitled, The Celestial Signs; containing 22 verses	442
86. Entitled, The Star which appeareth by Night; containing 17 verses	443
87. Entitled, The Most High; containing 19 verses	443
88. Entitled, The Overwhelming; containing 26 verses	444

89. Entitled, The Daybreak; containing 30 verses	445
90. Entitled, The Territory; containing 20 verses	447
91. Entitled, The Sun; containing 15 verses	447
92. Entitled, The Night; containing 21 verses	448
93. Entitled, The Brightness; containing 11 verses	448
94. Entitled, Have we not Opened; containing 8 verses	449
95. Entitled, The Fig; containing 8 verses	449
96. Entitled, Congealed Blood; containing 19 verses	450
97. Entitled, Al Kadr; containing 5 verses	451
98. Entitled, The Evidence; containing 8 verses	451
99. Entitled, The Earthquake, containing 8 verses	452
100. Entitled, The War Horses which run swiftly; containing 11 verses	453
101. Entitled, The Striking; containing 10 verses	453
102. Entitled, The Emulous Desire of Multiplying; containing 8 verses	454
103. Entitled, The Afternoon; containing 3 verses	454
104. Entitled, The Slanderer; containing 9 verses	454
105. Entitled, The Elephant; containing 5 verses	455
106. Entitled, Koreish; containing 4 verses	456
107. Entitled, Necessaries; containing 7 verses	457
108. Entitled, Al Cawthar; containing 3 verses	457
109. Entitled, The Unbelievers; containing 6 verses	458
110. Entitled, Assistance; containing 3 verses	458
111. Entitled, Abu Laheb; containing 5 verses	459
112. Entitled, The Declaration of God's Unity; containing 4 verses	459
113. Entitled, The Daybreak; containing 5 verses	460
114. Entitled, Men; containing 6 verses	460





THE Arabs, and the country they inhabit, which themselves call Jezīrat al 
Arab, or the Peninsula of the Arabians, but we Arabia, were so named from 
Araba, a small territory in the province of Tehāma;1 to which Yarab the son of 
Kahtān, the father of the ancient Arabs, gave his name, and where, some ages 
after, dwelt Ismael the son of Abraham by Hagar.  The Christian writers for 
several centuries speak of them under the appellation of Saracens; the most 
certain derivation of which word is from shark, the east, where the 
descendants of Joctan, the Kahtān of the Arabs, are placed by Moses,2 and in 
which quarter they dwelt in respect to the Jews.3
   The name of Arabia (used in a more extensive sense) sometimes comprehends 
all that large tract of land bounded by the river Euphrates, the Persian Gulf, 
the Sindian, Indian, and Red Seas, and part of the Mediterranean: above two-
thirds of which country, that is, Arabia properly so called, the Arabs have 
possessed almost from the Flood; and have made themselves masters of the rest, 
either by settlements or continual incursions; for which reason the Turks and 
Persians at this day call the whole Arabistān, or the country of the Arabs.
   But the limits of Arabia, in its more usual and proper sense, are much 
narrower, as reaching no farther northward than the Isthmus, which runs from 
Aila to the head of the Persian Gulf, and the borders of the territory of 
Cūfa; which tract of land the Greeks nearly comprehended under the name of 
Arabia the Happy.  The eastern geographers make Arabia Petręa to belong partly 
to Egypt, and partly to Shām or Syria, and the desert Arabia they call the 
deserts of Syria.4
   Proper Arabia is by the oriental writers generally divided into five 
provinces,5 viz., Yaman, Hejāz, Tehāma, Najd, and Yamāma; to which

   1  Pocock, Specim. Hist. Arab. 33. 	2  Gen. x. 30.	3  See Pocock, 
Specim. 33, 34.		4  Golius ad Alfragan. 78, 79.
5  Strabo says Arabia Felix was in his time divided into five kingdoms, l. 16, 
p. 1129.

some add Bahrein, as a sixth, but this province the more exact make part of 
Irįk;6 others reduce them all to two, Yaman and Hejāz, the last including the 
three other provinces of Tehāma, Najd, and Yamāma.
   The province of Yaman, so called either from its situation to the right 
hand, or south of the temple of Mecca, or else from the happiness and verdure 
of its soil, extends itself along the Indian Ocean from Aden to Cape Rasalgat; 
part of the Red Sea bounds it on the west and south sides, and the province of 
Hejāz on the north.1  It is subdivided into several lesser provinces, as 
Hadramaut, Shihr, Omān, Najrān, &c., of which Shihr alone produces the 
frankincense.2  The metropolis of Yaman is Sanaa, a very ancient city, in 
former times called Ozal, and much celebrated for its delightful situation; 
but the prince at present resides about five leagues northward from thence, at 
a place no less pleasant, called Hisn almawāheb, or the Castle of delights.3
   This country has been famous from all antiquity for the happiness of its 
climate, its fertility and riches,4 which induced Alexander the Great, after 
his return from his Indian expedition, to form a design of conquering it, and 
fixing there his royal seat; but his death, which happened soon after, 
prevented the execution of this project.5  Yet, in reality, great part of the 
riches which the ancients imagined were the produce of Arabia, came really 
from the Indies and the coasts of Africa; for the Egyptians, who had engrossed 
that trade, which was then carried on by way of the Red Sea, to themselves, 
industriously concealed the truth of the matter, and kept their ports shut to 
prevent foreigners penetrating into those countries, or receiving any 
information thence; and this precaution of theirs on the one side, and the 
deserts, unpassable to strangers, on the other, were the reason why Arabia was 
so little known to the Greeks and Romans.  The delightfulness and plenty of 
Yaman are owing to its mountains; for all that part which lies along the Red 
Sea is a dry, barren desert, in some places ten or twelve leagues over, but in 
return bounded by those mountains, which being well watered, enjoy an almost 
continual spring, and, besides coffee, the peculiar produce of this country, 
yield great plenty and variety of fruits, and in particular excellent corn, 
grapes, and spices.  There are no rivers of note in this country, for the 
streams which at certain times of the year descend from the mountains, seldom 
reach the sea, being for the most part drunk up and lost in the burning sands 
of that coast.1
   The soil of the other provinces is much more barren than that of Yaman; the 
greater part of their territories being covered with dry sands, or rising into 
rocks, interspersed here and there with some fruitful spots, which receive 
their greatest advantages from their water and palm trees.
   The province of Hejāz, so named because it divides Najd from Tehāma, is 
bounded on the south by Yaman and Tehāma, on the west by the Red Sea, on the 
north by the deserts of Syria, and on the east by the province of Najd.2  This 
province is famous for its two chief cities, Mecca and Medina, one of which is 
celebrated for its temple, and having given birth to Mohammed; and the other 
for being the 

   6  Gol. ad Alfragan. 79.	1  La Roque, Voyage de l'Arab, heur. 121.	2  
Gol. ad Alfragan. 79, 87.		3  Voyage de l'Arab, heur. 232.	4  
Vide Dionys. Perieges. v. 927, &c.	5  Strabo, l. 16, p. 1132.  Arrian, 161.	
	1  Voy. de l'Arab. heur. 121, 123, 153.	2  Vide Gol. ad Alfrag. 98.  
Abulfeda Descr. Arab. p. 5.

place of his residence for the last ten years of his life, and of his 
   Mecca, sometimes also called Becca, which words are synonymous, and signify 
a place of great concourse, is certainly one of the most ancient cities of the 
world: it is by some3 thought to be the Mesa of the scripture,4 a name not 
unknown to the Arabians, and supposed to be taken form one of Ismael's sons.5  
It is seated in a stony and barren valley, surrounded on all sides with 
mountains.6  The length of Mecca from south to north is about two miles, and 
its breadth from the foot of the mountain Ajyad, to the top of another called 
Koaikaān, about a mile.7  In the midst of this space stands the city, built of 
stone cut from the neighbouring mountains.8  There being no springs at Mecca,9 
at least none but what are bitter and unfit to drink,10 except only the well 
Zemzem, the water of which, though far the best, yet cannot be drank of any 
continuance, being brackish, and causing eruptions in those who drink 
plentifully of it,11 the inhabitants are obliged to use rain-water which they 
catch in cisterns.1  But this not being sufficient, several attempts were made 
to bring water thither from other places by aqueducts; and particularly about 
Mohammed's time, Zobair, one of the principal men of the tribe of Koreish, 
endeavoured at a great expense to supply the city with water from Mount 
Arafat, but without success; yet this was effected not many years ago, being 
begun at the charge of a wife of Solimān the Turkish emperor.2  But long 
before this, another aqueduct had been made from a spring at a considerable 
distance, which was, after several years' labour, finished by the Khalīf al 
   The soil about Mecca is so very barren as to produce no fruits but what are 
common in the deserts, though the prince or Sharīf has a garden well planted 
at his castle of Marbaa, about three miles westward from the city, where he 
usually resides.  Having therefore no corn or grain of their own growth, they 
are obliged to fetch it from other places;4 and Hashem, Mohammed's great-
grandfather, then prince of his tribe, the more effectually to supply them 
with provisions, appointed two caravans to set out yearly for that purpose, 
the one in summer, and the other in winter: 5 these caravans of purveyors are 
mentioned in the Korān.  The provisions brought by them were distributed also 
twice a year, viz., in the month of Rajeb, and at the arrival of the pilgrims.  
They are supplied with dates in great plenty from the adjacent country, and 
with grapes from Tayef, about sixty miles distant, very few growing at Mecca.  
The inhabitants of this city are generally very rich, being considerable 
gainers by the prodigious concourse of people of almost all nations at the 
yearly pilgrimage, at which time there is a great fair or mart for all kinds 
of merchandise.  They have also great numbers of cattle, and particularly of 
camels: however, the poorer sort cannot but live very indifferently in a place 
where almost every necessary of life must be purchased with money.  
Notwithstanding this great sterility 

   3  R.  Saadias in version.  Arab. Pentat. Sefer Juchasin. 135. b.	4  
Gen. x. 30.	5  Gol. ad Alfrag. 82  See Gen. xxv. 15.
6  Gol. ib. 98.  See Pitts' Account of the religion and manners of the 
Mohammedans, p. 96.		7  Sharif al Edrisi apud Poc. Specim. 122.
	8  Ibid.		9  Gol. ad Alfragan. 99.	10  Sharif al Edrisi ubi 
supra, 124.	11  Ibid. and Pitts ubi supra, p. 107.		1  Gol. ad Alfrag. 
99.	2  Ibid.		3  Sharif al Edrisi ubi supra.		4  Idem ib.
5  Poc. Spec. 51

near Mecca, yet you are no sooner out of its territory than you meet on all 
sides with plenty of good springs and streams of running water, with a great 
many gardens and cultivated lands.6
   The temple of Mecca, and the reputed holiness of this territory, will be 
treated of in a more proper place.
   Medina, which till Mohammed's retreat thither was called Yathreb, is a 
walled city about half as big as Mecca,7 built in a plain, salt in many 
places, yet tolerably fruitful, particularly in dates, but more especially 
near the mountains, two of which, Ohod on the north, and Air on the south, are 
about two leagues distant.  Here lies Mohammed interred1 in a magnificent 
building, covered with a cupola, and adjoining to the east side of the great 
temple, which is built in the midst of the city.2
   The province of Tehāma was so named from the vehement heat of its sandy 
soil, and is also called Gaur from its low situation; it is bounded on the 
west by the Red Sea, and on the other sides by Hejāz and Yaman, extending 
almost from Mecca to Aden.3
   The province of Najd, which word signifies a rising country, lies between 
those of Yamāma, Yaman, and Hejāz, and is bounded on the east by Irak.4
   The province of Yamāma, also called Arūd from its oblique situation, in 
respect of Yaman, is surrounded by the provinces of Najd, Tehāma, Bahrein, 
Omān, Shihr, Hadramaut, and Saba.  The chief city is Yamāma, which gives name 
to the province: it was anciently called Jaw, and is particularly famous for 
being the residence of Mohammed's competitor, the false prophet Moseilama.5
   The Arabians, the inhabitants of this spacious country, which they have 
possessed from the most remote antiquity, are distinguished by their own 
writers into two classes, viz., the old lost Arabians, and the present.
   The former were very numerous, and divided into several tribes, which are 
now all destroyed, or else lost and swallowed up among the other tribes, nor 
are any certain memoirs or records extant concerning them;6 though the memory 
of some very remarkable events and the catastrophe of some tribes have been 
preserved by tradition, and since confirmed by the authority of the Korān.
   The most famous tribes amongst these ancient Arabians were Ad, Thamūd, 
Tasm, Jadīs, the former Jorham, and Amalek.

   6  Sharif al Edrisi ubi supra, 125.	7  Id. Vulgņ Geogr. Nubiensis, 5.
   1  Though the notion of Mohammed's being buried at Mecca has been so long 
exploded, yet several modern writers, whether through ignorance or negligence 
I will not determine, have fallen into it.  It shall here take notice only of 
two; one is Dr. Smith, who having lived some time in Turkey, seems to be 
inexcusable: that gentleman in his Epistles de Moribus ac Institutis Turcarum, 
no less than thrice mentions the Mohammedans visiting the tomb of their 
prophet at Mecca, and once his being born at Medina-the reverse of which is 
true (see Ep. I, p. 22, Ep. 2, p. 63 and 64).  The other is the publisher of 
the last edition of Sir J. Mandevile's Travels, who on his author's saying 
very truly (p. 50) that the said tomb was at Methone, i.e., Medina, undertakes 
to correct the name of the town, which is something corrupted, by putting at 
the bottom of the page, Mecca.  The Abbot de Vertot, in his History of the 
Order of Malta (vol. i. p. 410, ed. 8vo.), seems also to have confounded these 
two cities together, though he had before mentioned Mohammed's sepulchre at 
Medina.  However, he is certainly mistaken, when he says that one point of the 
religion, both of the Christians and Mohammedans, was to visit, at least once 
in their lives, the tomb of the author of their respective faith.  Whatever 
may be the opinion of some Christians, I am well assured the Mohammedans think 
themselves under no manner of obligation in that respect.
2  Gol. ad Alfragan. 97, Abulfeda Descr. Arab. p. 40.	3  Gol. ubi sup. 95.	
	4  Ibid. 94.	5  Ibid. 95.
6  Abulfarag, p. 159.

   The tribe of Ad were descended from Ad, the son of Aws,1 the son of Aram,2 
the son of Sem, the son of Noah, who, after the confusion of tongues, settled 
in al Ahkāf, or the winding sands in the province of Hadramaut, where his 
posterity greatly multiplied.  Their first king was Shedād the son of Ad, of 
whom the eastern writers deliver many fabulous things, particularly that he 
finished the magnificent city his father had begun, wherein he built a fine 
palace, adorned with delicious gardens, to embellish which he spared neither 
cost nor labour, proposing thereby to create in his subjects a superstitious 
veneration of himself as a god.3  This garden or paradise was called the 
garden of Irem, and is mentioned in the Korān,4 and often alluded to by the 
oriental writers.  The city, they tell us, is still standing in the deserts of 
Aden, being preserved by providence as a monument of divine justice, though it 
be invisible, unless very rarely, when GOD permits it to be seen, a favour one 
Colabah pretended to have received in the reign of the Khalīf Moāwiyah, who 
sending for him to know the truth of the matter, Colabah related his whole 
adventure; that as he was seeking a camel he had lost, he found himself on a 
sudden at the gates of this city, and entering it saw not one inhabitant, at 
which, being terrified, he stayed no longer than to take with him some fine 
stones which he showed the Khalīf.5
   The descendants of Ad in process of time falling from the worship of the 
true God into idolatry, GOD sent the prophet Hūd (who is generally agreed to 
be Heber6) to preach to and reclaim them.  But they refusing to acknowledge 
his mission, or to obey him, GOD sent a hot and suffocating wind, which blew 
seven nights and eight days together, and entering at their nostrils passed 
through their bodies.7 and destroyed them all, a very few only excepted, who 
had believed in Hūd and retired with him to another place.8  That prophet 
afterwards returned into Hadramaut, and was buried near Hasec, where there is 
a small town now standing called Kabr Hūd, or the sepulchre of Hūd.  Before 
the Adites were thus severely punished, GOD, to humble them, and incline them 
to hearken to the preaching of his prophet, afflicted them with a drought for 
four years, so that all their cattle perished, and themselves were very near 
it; upon which they sent Lokmān (different from one of the same name who lived 
in David's time) with sixty others to Mecca to beg rain, which they not 
obtaining, Lokmān with some of his company stayed at Mecca, and thereby 
escaped destruction, giving rise to a tribe called the latter Ad, who were 
afterward changed into monkeys.1
   Some commentators on the Korān2 tell us these old Adites were of prodigious 
stature, the largest being 100 cubits high, and the least 60; which 
extraordinary size they pretend to prove by the testimony of the Korān.3
   The tribe of Thamūd were the posterity of Thamūd the son of Gather4 the son 
of Aram, who falling into idolatry, the prophet Sāleh was sent to bring them 
back to the worship of the true GOD.  This prophet lived between the time of 
Hūd and of Abraham, and therefore cannot be the

   1  Or Uz.  Gen. x. 22, 23.		2  Vide Kor. c. 89.  Some make Ad the son 
of Amalek, the son of Ham; but the other is the received opinion.  See 
D'Herbel. 51.	3  Vide Eund. 498.		4  Cap. 89.	5  D'Herbel. 51.
	6  The Jews acknowledge Heber to have been a great prophet.  Seder Olam. 
p. 2.		7  Al Beidāwi.	8  Poc. Spec. 35, &c.	1  Ibid, 36.	
	2  Jallālo'ddin et Zamakhshari.	3  Kor. c. 7.	4  Or Gether, vide 
Gen. x. 23.

same with the patriarch Sāleh, as Mr. d'Herbelot imagines.5  The learned 
Bochart with more probability takes him to be Phaleg.6  A small number of the 
people of Thamūd hearkened to the remonstrances of Sāleh, but the rest 
requiring, as a proof of his mission, that he should cause a she-camel big 
with young to come out of a rock in their presence, he accordingly obtained it 
of GOD, and the camel was immediately delivered of a young one ready weaned; 
but they, instead of believing, cut the hamstrings of the camel and killed 
her; at which act of impiety GOD, being highly displeased, three days after 
struck them dead in their houses by an earthquake and a terrible noise from 
heaven, which, some7 say, was the voice of Gabriel the archangel crying aloud, 
"Die, all of you."  Sāleh, with those who were reformed by him, were saved 
from this destruction; the prophet going into Palestine, and from thence to 
Mecca,8 where he ended his days.
   This tribe first dwelt in Yaman, but being expelled thence by Hamyar the 
son of Sāba,9 they settled in the territory of Hejr in the province of Hejāz, 
where their habitations cut out of the rocks, mentioned in the Korān,10 are 
still to be seen, and also the crack of the rock whence the camel issued, 
which, as an eye-witness11 hath declared, is 60 cubits wide.  These houses of 
the Thamūdites being of the ordinary proportion, are used as an argument to 
convince those of a mistake who who this people to have been of a gigantic 
   The tragical destructions of these two potent tribes are often insisted on 
in the Korān, as instances of GOD'S judgment on obstinate unbelievers.
   The tribe of Tasm were the posterity of Lūd the son of Sem, and Jadīs of 
the descendants of Jether.1  These two tribes dwelt promiscuously together 
under the government of Tasm, till a certain tyrant made a law that no maid of 
the tribe of Jadīs should marry unless first defloured by him;2 which the 
Jadisians not enduring, formed a conspiracy, and inviting the king and chiefs 
of Tasm to an entertainment, privately hid their swords in the sand, and in 
the midst of their mirth fell on them and slew them all, and extirpated the 
greatest part of that tribe; however, the few who escaped obtaining aid of the 
king of Yaman, then (as is said) Dhu Habshān Ebn Akrān,3 assaulted the Jadīs 
and utterly destroyed them, there being scarce any mention made from that time 
of either of these tribes.4
   The former tribe of Jorham (whose ancestor some pretend was one of the 
eighty persons saved in the ark of Noah, according to a Mohammedan tradition5) 
was contemporary with Ad, and utterly perished.6  The tribe of Amalek were 
descended from Amalek the son of Eliphaz the son of Esau 7, though some of the 
oriental authors say Amalek was the son of Ham the son of Noah,8 and others 
the son of Azd the son of Sem.9  The posterity of this person rendered 
themselves very powerful,10 and before the time of Joseph conquered the lower 
Egypt under

   5  D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. 740.	6  Bochart Geogr. Sac.	7  See D'Herbel. 
366.	8  Ebn Shohnah	
9  Poc. Spec. 57.		10  Kor. c. 15.	11  Abu Musa al Ashari.	12.  Vide 
Poc. Spec. 37.	1  Abulfeda.
2  A like custom is said to have been i n some manors in England, and also in 
Scotland, where it was called "culliage," having been established by K. Ewen, 
and abolished by Malcolm III.  See Bayle's Dict. Art. Sixte IV., Rem. H.	
	3  Poc. Spec. 60.	4  Ibid. 37, &c.	5  Ibid. p. 38.	6  Ebn Shohnah.	
	7  Gen. xxxvi. 12.		8  Vide D'Herbelot, p. 110.
9  Ebn Shohnah		10  Vide Numb. xxiv. 20.

their king Walīd, the first who took the name of Pharaoh, as the eastern 
writers tell us;11 seeming by these Amalekites to mean the same people which 
the Egyptian histories call Phoenician shepherds.12  But after they had 
possessed the throne of Egypt for some descents, they were expelled by the 
natives, and at length totally destroyed by the Israelites.13
   The present Arabians, according to their own historians, are sprung from 
two stocks, Kahtān, the same with Joctan the son of Eber,14 and Adnān 
descended in a direct line from Ismael the son of Abraham and Hagar; the 
posterity of the former they call al Arab al Ariba,15 i.e., the genuine or 
pure Arabs, and those of the latter al Arab al mostįreba, i.e., naturalized or 
institious Arabs, though some reckon the ancient lost tribes to have been the 
only pure Arabians, and therefore call the posterity of Kahtān also Mótareba, 
which word likewise signifies insititious Arabs, though in a nearer degree 
than Mostįreba; the descendants of Ismael being the more distant graff.
   The posterity of Ismael have no claim to be admitted as pure Arabs, their 
ancestor being by origin and language an Hebrew; but having made an alliance 
with the Jorhamites, by marrying a daughter of Modad, and accustomed himself 
to their manner of living and language, his descendants became blended with 
them into one nation.  The uncertainty of the descents between Ismael and 
Adnān is the reason why they seldom trace their genealogies higher than the 
latter, whom they acknowledge as father of their tribes, the descents from him 
downwards being pretty certain and uncontroverted.1
   The genealogy of these tribes being of great use to illustrate the Arabian 
history, I have taken the pains to form a genealogical table from their most 
approved authors, to which I refer the curious.
   Besides these tribes of Arabs mentioned by their own authors, who were all 
descended from the race of Sem, others of them were the posterity of Ham by 
his son Cush, which name is in scripture constantly given to the Arabs and 
their country, though our version renders it Ethiopia; but strictly speaking, 
the Cushites did not inhabit Arabia properly so called, but the banks of the 
Euphrates and the Persian Gulf, whither they came form Chuzestān or Susiana, 
the original settlement of their father.2  They might probably mix themselves 
in process of time with the Arabs of the other race, but the eastern writers 
take little or no notice of them.
   The Arabians were for some centuries under the government of the 
descendants of Kāhtan; Yįrab, one of his sons, founding the kingdom of Yaman, 
and Jorham, another of them, that of Hejāz.
   The province of Yaman, or the better part of it, particularly the provinces 
of Saba and Hadramaut, was governed by princes of the tribe of Hamyar, though 
at length the kingdom was translated to the descendants of Cahlān, his 
brother, who yet retained the title of king of Hamyar, and had all of them the 
general title of Tobba, which signifies successor, and was affected to this 
race of princes, as that of

   11  Mirāt Caļnāt.		12  Vide Joseph. cont. Apion. l. i.	13  Vide 
Exod. xvii. 18, &c.; I Sam. xv. 2, &c.; ibid. xxvii. 8, 9; I Chron. iv. 43.
	14  R. Saad. in vers. Arab. Pentat. Gen. x. 25.  Some writers make 
Kahtān a descendant of Ismael, but against the current of oriental historians.  
See Poc. Spec. 39.		15  An expression something like that of St. 
Paul, who calls himself "an Hebrew of the Hebrews," Philip. iii. 5.	
	1  Poc. Spec. p. 40.	2  Vide Hyde Hist. Rel. veter. Persar. p. 37, 

Cęsar was to the Roman emperors, and Khalīf to the successors of Mohammed.  
There were several lesser princes who reigned in other parts of Yaman, and 
were mostly, if not altogether, subject to the king of Hamyar, whom they 
called the great king, but of these history has recorded nothing remarkable or 
that may be depended upon.1
   The first great calamity that befell the tribes settled in Yaman was the 
inundation of Aram, which happened soon after the time of Alexander the Great, 
and is famous in the Arabian history.  No less than eight tribes were forced 
to abandon their dwellings upon this occasion, some of which gave rise to the 
two kingdoms of Ghassān and Hira.  And this was probably the time of the 
migration of those tribes or colonies which were led into Mesopotamia by three 
chiefs,Becr, Modar, and Rabīa, from whom the three provinces of that country 
are still named Diyar Becr, Diyar Modar, and Diyar Rabīa.2  Abdshems, surnamed 
Saba, having built the city from him called Saba, and afterwards Mareb, made a 
vast mound, or dam,3 to serve as a basin or reservoir to receive the water 
which came down from the mountains, not only for the use of the inhabitants, 
and watering their lands, but also to keep the country they had subjected in 
greater awe by being masters of the water.  This building stood like a 
mountain above their city, and was by them esteemed so strong that they were 
in no apprehension of its ever failing.  The water rose to the height of 
almost twenty fathoms, and was kept in on every side by a work so solid, that 
many of the inhabitants had their houses built upon it.  Every family had a 
certain portion of this water, distributed by aqueducts.  But at length, GOD, 
being highly displeased at their great pride and insolence, and resolving to 
humble and disperse them, sent a mighty flood, which broke down the mound by 
night while the inhabitants were asleep, and carried away the whole city, with 
the neighbouring towns and people.4
   The tribes which remained in Yaman after this terrible devastation still 
continued under the obedience of the former princes, till about seventy years 
before Mohammed, when the king of Ethiopia sent over forces to assist the 
Christians of Yaman against the cruel persecution of their king, Dhu Nowās, a 
bigoted Jew, whom they drove to that extremity that he forced his horse into 
the sea, and so lost his life and crown,5 after which the country was governed 
by four Ethiopian princes successively, till Selif, the son of Dhu Yazan, of 
the tribe of Hamyar, obtaining succours from Khosrū Anushirwān, king of 
Persia, which had been denied him by the emperor Heraclius, recovered the 
throne and drove out the Ethiopians, but was himself slain by some of them who 
were left behind.  The Persians appointed the succeeding princes till Yaman 
fell into the hands of Mohammed, to whom Bazan, or rather Badhān, the last of 
them, submitted, and embraced this new religion.1
   This kingdom of the Hammyarites is said to have lasted 2,020 years,2 or as 
others say above 3,000;3 the length of the reign of each prince being very 
   It has been already observed that two kingdoms were founded by those who 
left their country on occasion of the inundation of Aram:

   1  Poc. Spec. p. 65, 66.		2  Vide Gol. ad Alfrag. p. 232.	3  
Poc. Spec. p. 57.	4  Geogr. Nubiens. p. 52.	
5  See Prideaux's Life of Mahomet, p. 61.	1  Poc. Spec. p. 63, 64.	2  
Abulfeda.	3  Al Jannābi and Ahmed Ebn Yusef.

they were both out of the proper limits of Arabia.  One of them was the 
kingdom of Ghassān.  The founders of this kingdom were of the tribe of Azd, 
who, settling in Syria Damascena near a water called Ghassān, thence took 
their name, and drove out (the Dajaamian Arabs of the tribe of Salīh, who 
before possessed the country;4 where they maintained their kingdom 400 years, 
as others say 600, or as Abulfeda more exactly computes, 616.  Five of these 
princes were named Hāreth, which the Greeks write Aretas: and one of them it 
was whose governor ordered the gates of Damascus to be watched to take St. 
Paul.5  This tribe were Christians, their last king being Jabalah the son of 
al Ayham, who on the Arabs' successes in Syria professed Mohammedism under the 
Khalīf Omar; but receiving a disgust from him, returned to his former faith, 
and retired to Constantinople.6
   The other kingdom was that of Hira, which was founded by Malec, of the 
descendants of Cahlān7 in Chaldea or Irāk; but after three descents the throne 
came by marriage to the Lakhmians, called also the Mondars (the general name 
of those princes), who preserved their dominion, notwithstanding some small 
interruption by the Persians, till the Khalīfat of Abubecr, when al Mondar al 
Maghrūr, the last of them, lost his life and crown by the arms of Khaled Ebn 
al Walīd.  This kingdom lasted 622 years eight months.8  Its princes were 
under the protection of the kings of Persia, whose lieutenants they were over 
the Arabs of Irāk, as the kings of Ghassān were for the Roman emperors over 
those of Syria.9
   Jorham the son of Kahtān reigned in Hejāz, where his posterity kept the 
throne till the time of Ismael; but on his marrying the daughter of Modad, by 
whom he had twelve sons, Kidar, one of them, had the crown resigned to him by 
his uncles the Jorhamites,1 though others say the descendants of Ismael 
expelled that tribe, who retiring to Johainah, were, after various fortune, at 
last all destroyed by an inundation.2
   Of the kings of Hamyar, Hira, Ghassān, and Jorham, Dr. Pocock has given us 
catalogues tolerably exact, to which I refer the curious.3
   After the expulsion of the Jorhamites, the government of Hejāz seems not to 
have continued for many centuries in the hands of one prince, but to have been 
divided among the heads of tribes, almost in the same manner as the Arabs of 
the desert are governed at this day.  At Mecca an aristocracy prevailed, where 
the chief management of affairs till the time of Mohammed was in the tribe of 
Koreish, especially after they had gotten the custody of the Caaba from the 
tribe of Khozāah.4
   Besides the kingdoms which have been taken notice of, there were some other 
tribes which in latter times had princes of their own, and formed states of 
lesser note, particularly the tribe of Kenda:5 but as I am not writing a just 
history of the Arabs, and an account of them would be of no great use ot my 
present purpose, I shall waive any further mention of them.
   After the time of Mohammed, Arabia was for about three centuries under the 
Khalīfs his successors.  But in the year 325 of the Hejra,

   4  Poc. Spec. p. 76.	5  2 Cor. xi. 32; Acts ix. 24.	6  Vide Ockley's 
History of the Saracens, vol. i. p. 174.	7  Poc. Spec. p. 66.
8  Ibid. p. 74.	9  Ibid. and Procop. in Pers. apud Photium. p. 71, &c.	
	1  Poc. Spec. p. 45.	2  Ibid. p. 79.
3  Ibid. p. 55, seq.	4  Vide ibid. p. 41, and Prideaux's Life of Mahomet, 
p. 2.		5  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 79, &c.

great part of that country was in the hands of the Karmatians,6 a new sect who 
had committed great outrages and disorders even in Mecca, and to whom the 
Khalīfs were obliged to pay tribute, that the pilgrimage thither might be 
performed: of this sect I may have occasion to speak in another place.  
Afterwards Yaman was governed by the house of Thabateba, descended from Ali 
the son-in-law of Mohammed, whose sovereignty in Arabia some place so high as 
the time of Charlemagne.  However, it was the posterity of Ali, or pretenders 
to be such, who reigned in Yaman and Egypt so early as the tenth century.  The 
present reigning family in Yaman is probably that of Ayub, a branch of which 
reigned there in the thirteenth century, and took the title of Khalīf and 
Imām, which they still retain.7  They are not possessed of the whole province 
of Yaman,8 there being several other independent kingdoms there, particularly 
that of Fartach.  The crown of Yaman descends not regularly from father to 
son, but the prince of the blood royal who is most in favour with the great 
ones, or has the strongest interest, generally succeeds.9
   The governors of Mecca and Medina, who have always been of the race of 
Mohammed, also threw off their subjection to the Khalīfs, since which time 
four principal families, all descended from Hassan the son of Ali, have 
reigned there under the title of Sharīf, which signifies noble, as they reckon 
themselves to be on account of their descent.  These are Banu Kāder, Banu Mūsa 
Thani, Banu Hashem, and Banu Kitāda;1 which last family now is, or lately was, 
in the throne of Mecca, where they have reigned above 500 years.  The reigning 
family at Medina are the Banu Hashem, who also reigned at Mecca before those 
of Kitāda.2
   The kings of Yaman, as well as the princes of Mecca and Medina, are 
alsolutely independent3 and not at all subject to the Turk, as some late 
authors have imagined.4  These princes often making cruel wars among 
themselves, gave an opportunity to Selim I. and his son Solimān, to make 
themselves masters of the coasts of Arabia on the Red Sea, and of part of 
Yaman, by means of a fleet built at Sues: but their successors have not been 
able to maintain their conquests; for, except the port of Jodda, where they 
have a Basha whose authority is very small, they possess nothing considerable 
in Arabia.5
   Thus have the Arabs preserved their liberty, of which few nations can 
produce so ancient monuments, with very little interruption, from the very 
Deluge; for though very great armies have been sent against them, all attempts 
to subdue them were unsuccessful.  The Assyrian or Median empires never got 
footing among them.6  The Persian monarchs, though they were their friends, 
and so far respected by them as to have an annual present of frankincense,7 
yet could never make them tributary;8 and were so far from being their 
masters, that Cambyses, on his expedition against Egypt, was obliged to ask 
their leave to pass through their territories;9 and when Alexander had subdued 
that mighty empire, yet the Arabians had so little apprehension of him, that 
they alone, of

   6  Vide Elmacin. in vita al Rādi.	7  Voyage de l-Arab. heur. p. 255. 	
	8  Ibid. 153, 273.		9  Ibid. 254.	1  Ibid. 143.	2  
Ibid. 145.	3  Ibid. 143, 148.		4  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 
477.	5  Voy. de l'Arab. heur. p. 148.		6  Diodor. Sic. 1. 2, p. 131.	
	7  Herodot. 1  3, c. 97.		8  Idem ib. c. 91.  Diodor. ubi sup.
		9  Herodot. 1. 3, c. 8 and 98.

all the neighbouring nations, sent no ambassadors to him, either first or 
last; which, with a desire of possessing so rich a country, made him form a 
design against it, and had he not died before he could put it in execution,10 
this people might possibly have convinced him that he was not invincible: and 
I do not find that any of his successors, either in Asia or Egypt, ever made 
any attempt against them.1  The Romans never conquered any part of Arabia 
properly so called; the most they did was to make some tribes in Syria 
tributary to them, as Pompey did one commanded by Sampsiceramus or 
Shams'alkerām, who reigned at Hems or Emesa;2 but none of the Romans, or any 
other nations that we know of, ever penetrated so far into Arabia as Ęlius 
Gallus under Augustus Cęsar;3 yet he was so far from subduing it, as some 
authors pretend,4 that he was soon obliged to return without effecting 
anything considerable, having lost the best part of his army by sickness and 
other accidents.5  This ill success probably discouraged the Romans from 
attacking them any more; for Trajan, notwithstanding the flatteries of the 
historians and orators of his time, and the medals struck by him, did not 
subdue the Arabs; the province of Arabia, which it is said he added to the 
Roman empire, scarce reaching farther than Arabia Petręa, or the very skirts 
of the country.  And we are told by one author,6 that this prince, marching 
against the Agarens who had revolted, met with such a reception that he was 
obliged to return without doing anything.
   The religion of the Arabs before Mohammed, which they call the state of 
ignorance, in opposition to the knowledge of GOD'S true worship revealed to 
them by their prophet, was chiefly gross idolatry; the Sabian religion having 
almost overrun the whole nation, though there were also great numbers of 
Christians, Jews, and Magians among them.
   I shall not here transcribe what Dr. Prideaux7 has written of the original 
of the Sabian religion; but instead thereof insert a brief account of the 
tenets and worship of that sect.  They do not only believe one GOD, but 
produce many strong arguments for His unity, though they also pay an adoration 
to the stars, or the angels and intelligences which they suppose reside in 
them, and govern the world under the Supreme Deity.  They endeavour to perfect 
themselves in the four intellectual virtues, and believe the souls of the 
wicked men will be punished for nine thousand ages, but will afterwards be 
received to mercy.  They are obliged to pray three times8 a day; the first, 
half an hour or less before sunrise, ordering it so that they may, just as the 
sun rises, finish eight adorations, each containing three prostrations;9 the 
second prayer they end at noon, when the sun begins to decline, in saying 
which they perform five such adorations as the former: and in the same they do 
the third time, ending just as the sun sets.  They fast three times a year, 
the first time thirty days, the next nine days, and the last seven.  They 
offer many sacrifices, but eat no part of them, burning them all.  They 
abstain from beans, garlic, and some other pulse and vegetables.1  As

   10  Strabo, l. 16, p. 1076, 1132.		1  Vide Diodor. Sic. ubi 
supra.	2  Strabo, l. 16, p. 1092.		3  Dion Cassius, l. 53, p. m. 
516		4  Huet, Hist. du Commerce et de la Navigation des Anciens, c. 50.
		5  See the whole expedition described at large by Strabo, l. 16, 
p. 1126, &c.		6  Xiphilin. epit.		7  Connect. of the Hist. 
of the Old and New Test. p. 1, bk. 3.		8  Some say seven.  See 
D'Herbelot, p. 726, and Hyde de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 128
9  Others say they use no incurvations or prostrations at all; vide Hyde ibid.
		1  Abulfarag, Hist. Dynast. p. 281, &c.

to the Sabian Kebla, or part to which they turn their faces in praying, 
authors greatly differ; one will have it to be the north,2 another the south, 
a third Mecca, and a fourth the star to which they pay their devotions:3 and 
perhaps there may be some variety in their practice in this respect.  They go 
on pilgrimage to a place near the city of Harran in Mesopotamia, where great 
numbers of them dwell, and they have also a great respect for the temple of 
Mecca, and the pyramids of Egypt;4 fancying these last to be the sepulchres of 
Seth, and of Enoch and Sabi his two sons, whom they look on as the first 
propagators of their religion; at these structures they sacrifice a cock and a 
black calf, and offer up incense.5  Besides the book of Psalms, the only true 
scripture they read, they have other books which they esteem equally sacred, 
particularly one in the Chaldee tongue which they call the book of Seth, and 
is full of moral discourses.  This sect say they took the name of Sabians from 
the above-mentioned Sabi, though it seems rather to be derived from Saba,6 or 
the host of heaven, which they worship.7  Travellers commonly call them 
Christians of St. John the Baptist, whose disciples also they pretend to be, 
using a kind of baptism, which is the greatest mark they bear of Christianity.  
This is one of the religions, the practice of which Mohammed tolerated (on 
paying tribute), and the professors of it are often included in that 
expression of the Korān, "those to whom the scriptures have been given," or 
literally, the people of the book.
   The idolatry of the Arabs then, as Sabians, chiefly consisted in 
worshipping the fixed stars and planets, and the angels and their images, 
which they honoured as inferior deities, and whose intercession they begged, 
as their mediators with GOD.  For the Arabs acknowledged one supreme GOD, the 
Creator and LORD of the universe, whom they called Allah Taāla, the most high 
GOD; and their other deities, who were subordinate to him, they called simply 
al Ilahāt, i.e., the goddesses; which words the Grecians not understanding, 
and it being their constant custom to resolve the religion of every other 
nation into their own, and find out gods of their to match the others', they 
pretend that the Arabs worshipped only two deities, Orotalt and Alilat, as 
those names are corruptly written, whom they will have to be the same with 
Bacchus and Urania; pitching on the former as one of the greatest of their own 
gods, and educated in Arabia, and on the other, because of the veneration 
shown by the Arabs to the stars.1
   That they acknowledged one supreme GOD, appears, to omit other proof, from 
their usual form of addressing themselves to him, which was this, "I dedicate 
myself to thy service, O GOD!  Thou hast no companion, except thy companion of 
whom thou art absolute master, and of whatever is his."2  So that they 
supposed the idols not to be sui juris, though they offered sacrifices and 
other offerings to them, as well as to GOD, who was also often put off with 
the least portion, as Mohammed upbraids them.  Thus when they planted fruit 
trees, or sowed a field, they divided it by a line into two parts, setting one 

   2  Idem ibid.		3  Hyde ubi supr. p. 124, &c.		4  D'Herbel. ubi 
supr.	5  See Greaves' Pyramidogr. p. 6, 7.		6  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 
138.		7  Thabet Ebn Korrah, a famous astronomer, and himself a Sabian, 
wrote a treatise in Syriac concerning the doctrines, rites, and ceremonies of 
this sect; from which, if it could be recovered, we might expect much better 
information than any taken from the Arabian writers; vide Abulfarag, ubi sup.	
	1  Vide Herodot. 1. 3, c. 8; Arrian, p. 161, 162, and Strab. l. 16.	
	2  Al Shahrestani.

for their idols, and the other for GOD; if any of the fruits happened to fall 
from the idol's part into GOD'S, they made restitution; but if from GOD'S part 
into the idol's, they made no restitution.  So when they watered the idol's 
grounds, if the water broke over the channels made for that purpose, and ran 
on GOD'S part, they damned it up again; but if the contrary, they let it run 
on, saying, they wanted what was GOD'S, but he wanted nothing.3  In the same 
manner, if the offering designed for GOD happened to be better than that 
designed for the idol, they made an exchange, but not otherwise.4
   It was from this gross idolatry, or the worship of inferior deities, or 
companions of GOD, as the Arabs continue to call them, that Mohammed reclaimed 
his countrymen, establishing the sole worship of the true GOD among them; so 
that how much soever the Mohammedans are to blame in other points, they are 
far from being idolaters, as some ignorant writers have pretended.
   The worship of the stars the Arabs might easily be led into, from their 
observing the changes of weather to happen at the rising and setting of 
certain of them,5 which after a long course of experience induced them to 
ascribe a divine power to those stars, and to think themselves indebted to 
them for their rains, a very great benefit and refreshment to their parched 
country: this superstition the Korān particularly takes notice of.1
   The ancient Arabians and Indians, between which two nations was a great 
conformity of religions, had seven celebrated temples, dedicated to the seven 
planets; one of which in particular, called Beit Ghomdān, was built in Sanaa, 
the metropolis of Yaman, by Dahac, to the honour of al Zoharah or the planet 
Venus, and was demolished by the Khalīf Othman;2 by whose murder was fulfilled 
the prophetical inscription set, as is reported, over this temple, viz., 
"Ghomdān, he who destroyeth thee shall be slain.3  The temple of Mecca is also 
said to have been consecrated to Zohal, or Saturn.4
   Though these deities were generally reverenced by the whole nation, yet 
each tribe chose some one as the more peculiar object of their worship.
   Thus as to the stars and planets, the tribe of Hamyar chiefly worshipped 
the sun; Misam,5 al Debarān, or the Bull's-eye; Lakhm and Jodām, al Moshtari, 
or Jupiter; Tay, Sohail, or Canopus; Kais, Sirius, or the Dog-star; and Asad, 
Otāred, or Mercury.6  Among the worshippers of Sirius, one Abu Cabsha was very 
famous; some will have him to be the same with Waheb, Mohammed's grandfather 
by the mother, but others say he was of the tribe of Khozāah.  This man used 
his utmost endeavours to persuade the Koreish to leave their images and 
worship this star; for which reason Mohammed, who endeavoured also to make 
them leave their images, was by them nicknamed the son of Abu Cabsha.7  The 
worship of this star is particularly hinted at in the Korān.8
   Of the angels or intelligences which they worshipped, the Korān,9 makes 
mention only of three, which were worshipped under female names;10  Allat, al 
Uzza, and Manah.  These were by them called

   3  Nodhm al dorr.		4  Al Beidāwi.		5  Vide Post.	1  
Vide Poc. Spec. p. 163.		2  Shahrestani.		3  Al Jannābi.	
	4  Shahrestani.	5  This name seems to be corrupted, there being no 
such among the Arab tribes.  Poc. Spec. p. 130.		6  Abulfarag, p. 160.
	7  Poc. Spec. p. 132.	8  Cap. 53.
9  Ibid.		10  Ibid.

goddesses, and the daughters of GOD; an appellation they gave not only to the 
angels, but also to their images, which they either believed to be inspired 
with life by GOD, or else to become the tabernacles of the angels, and to be 
animated by them; and they gave them divine worship, because they imagined 
they interceded for them with GOD.
   Allāt was the idol of the tribe of Thakīf who dwelt at Tayef, and had a 
temple consecrated to her in a place called Nakhlah.  This idol al Mogheirah 
destroyed by Mohammed's order, who sent him and Abu Sofiān on that commission 
in the ninth year of the Hejra.1  The inhabitants of Tayef, especially the 
women, bitterly lamented the loss of this their deity, which they were so fond 
of, that they begged of Mohammed as a condition of peace, that it might not be 
destroyed for three years, and not obtaining that, asked only a month's 
respite; but he absolutely denied it.2  There are several derivations of this 
word which the curious may learn from Dr. Pocock:3 it seems most probably to 
be derived from the same root with Allah, to which it may be a feminine, and 
will then signify the goddess.
   Al Uzza, as some affirm, was the idol of the tribes of Koreish and 
Kenānah,4 and part of the tribe of Salim:5 others6 tell us it was a tree called 
the Egyptian thorn, or acacia, worshipped by the tribe of Ghatfān, first 
consecrated by one Dhālem, who built a chapel over it, called Boss, so 
contrived as to give a sound when any person entered.  Khāled Ebn Walīd being 
sent by Mohammed in the eighth year of the Hejra to destroy this idol, 
demolished the chapel, and cutting down this tree or image, burnt it: he also 
slew the priestess, who ran out with her hair dishevelled, and her hands on 
her head as a suppliant.  Yet the author who relates this, in another place 
says, the chapel was pulled down, and Dhālem himself killed by one Zohair, 
because he consecrated this chapel with design to draw the pilgrims thither 
from Mecca, and lessen the reputation of the Caaba.  The name of this deity is 
derived from the root azza, and signifies the most mighty.
   Manah was the object of worship of the tribes of Hodhail and Khazāah,7 who 
dwelt between Mecca and Medina, and, as some say,8 of the tribes of Aws, 
Khazraj, and Thakīf also.  This idol was a large stone,9 demolished by one 
Saad, in the eighth year of the Hejra, a year so fatal to the idols of Arabia.  
The name seems derived from mana, to flow, from the flowing of the blood of 
the victims sacrificed to the deity; whence the valley of Mina,10 near Mecca, 
had also its name, where the pilgrims at this day slay their sacrifices.1
   Before we proceed to the other idols, let us take notice of five more, 
which with the former three are all the Korān mentions by name, and they are 
Wadd, Sawā, Yaghūth, Yäūk, and Nasr.  These are said to have been antediluvian 
idols, which Noah preached against, and were afterwards taken by the Arabs for 
gods, having been men of great merit and piety in their time, whose statues 
they reverenced at first with a 

   1  Dr. Prideaux mentions this expedition, but names only Abu Sofiān, and 
mistaking the name of the idol for an appellative, supposes he went only to 
disarm the Tayefians of their weapons and instruments of war.  See his Life of 
Mahomet, p. 98.	
2  Abulfeda, Vit Moham. p. 127		3  Spec. p. 90		4  Al 
Jauhari, apud eund. p. 91.		5  Al Shahrestani, ibid.	6  Al 
Firauzabādi, ibid.		7  Al Jauhari.	8  Al Shahrestani, Abulfeda, 
&c.	9  Al Beidāwi, al Zamakhshari.	10  Poc. Spec. 91, &c.	1  Ibid.

civil honour only, which in process of time became heightened to a divine 
   Wadd was supposed to be the heaven, and was worshipped under the form of a 
man by the tribe of Calb in Daumat al Jandal.3
   Sawā was adored under the shape of a woman by the tribe of Hamadan, or, as 
others4 write, of Hodhail in Rohat.  This idol lying under water for some time 
after the Deluge, was at length, it is said, discovered by the devil, and was 
worshipped by those of Hodhail, who instituted pilgrimages to it.5
   Yaghūth was an idol in the shape of a lion, and was the deity of the tribe 
of Madhaj and others who dwelt in Yaman.6  Its name seems to be derived from 
ghatha, which signifies to help.
   Yäūk was worshipped by the tribe of Morād, or, according to others, by that 
of Hamadan,7 under the figure of a horse.  It is said he was a man of great 
piety, and his death much regretted; whereupon the devil appeared to his 
friends in a human form, and undertaking to represent him to the life, 
persuaded them, by way of comfort, to place his effigies in their temples, 
that they might have it in view when at their devotions.  This was done, and 
seven others of extraordinary merit had the same honours shown them, till at 
length their posterity made idols of them in earnest.8  The name Yäūk probably 
comes from the verb āka, to prevent or avert.9
   Nasr was a deity adored by the tribe of Hamyar, or at Dhū'l Khalaah in 
their territories, under the image of an eagle, which the name signifies.
   There are, or were, two statues at Bamiyān, a city of Cabul in the Indies, 
50 cubits high, which some writers suppose to be the same with Yaghūth and 
Yäūk, or else with Manah and Allāt; and they also speak of a third standing 
near the others, but something less, in the shape of an old woman, called 
Nesrem or Nesr.  These statues were hollow within, for the secret giving of 
oracles;10 but they seem to have been different from the Arabian idols.  There 
was also an idol at Sūmenat in the Indies, called Lāt or al Lāt, whose statue 
was 50 fathoms high, of a single stone, and placed in the midst of a temple 
supported by 56 pillars of massy gold: this idol Mahmūd Ebn Sebecteghin, who 
conquered that part of India, broke to pieces with his own hands.1
   Besides the idols we have mentioned, the Arabs also worshipped great 
numbers of others, which would take up too much time to have distinct accounts 
given of them; and not being named in the Korān, are not so much to our 
present purpose: for besides that every housekeeper had his household god or 
gods, which he last took leave of and first saluted at his going abroad and 
returning home,2 there were no less than 360 idols,3 equalling in number the 
days of their year, in and about the Caaba of Mecca; the chief of whom was 
Hobal,4 brought from Belka in Syria into Arabia by Amru Ebn Lohai, pretending 
it would procure them rain when they wanted it.5  It was the statue of a man, 
made of agate, which having by some accident lost a hand, the

   2  Kor. c. 71.   Comment. Persic.   Vide Hyde de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 133.	
	3  Al Jauhari, al Sharestani.		4  Idem, al Firauzabādi, and 
Safio'ddin.		5  Al Firauzab.		6  Shahrestani.		7  Al 
8  Al Firauzab.		9  Poc. Spec. 94.		10  See Hyde de Rel. Vet. 
Pers. p. 132.		1  D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient. p. 512.		2  Al 
Mostatraf.		3  Al Jannāb.		4  Abulfed, Shahrest. &c.
5  Poc. Spec. 95.

Koreish repaired it with one of gold: he held in his hand seven arrows without 
heads or feathers, such as the Arabs used in divination.6  This idol is 
supposed to have been the same with the image of Abraham,7 found and destroyed 
by Mohammed in the Caaba, on his entering it, in the eighth year of the Hejra, 
when he took Mecca,8 and surrounded with a great number of angels and 
prophets, as inferior deities; among whom, as some say, was Ismael, with 
divining arrows in his hand also.9
   Asāf and Nayelah, the former the image of a man, the latter of a woman, 
were also two idols brought with Hobal from Syria, and placed the one on Mount 
Safā, and the other on Mount Merwa.  They tell us Asāf was the son of Amru, 
and Nayelah the daughter of Sahāl, both of the tribe of Jorham, who committing 
whoredom together in the Caaba, were by GOD converted into stone,10 and 
afterwards worshipped by the Koreish, and so much reverenced by them, that 
though this superstition was condemned by Mohammed, yet he was forced to allow 
them to visit those mountains as monuments of divine justice.11
   I shall mention but one idol more of this nation, and that was a lump of 
dough worshipped by the tribe of Hanīfa, who used it with more respect than 
the Papists do theirs, presuming not to eat it till they were compelled to it 
by famine.12
   Several of their idols, as Manah in particular, were no more than large 
rude stones, the worship of which the posterity of Ismael first introduced; 
for as they multiplied, and the territory of Mecca grew too strait for them, 
great numbers were obliged to seek new abodes; and on such migrations it was 
usual for them to take with them some of the stones of that reputed holy land, 
and set them up in the places where they fixed; and these stones they at first 
only compassed out of devotion, as they had accustomed to do the Caaba.  But 
this at last ended in rank idolatry, the Ismaelites forgetting the religion 
left them by their father so far as to pay divine worship to any fine stone 
they met with.1
   Some of the pagan Arabs believed neither a creation past, nor a 
resurrection to come, attributing the origin of things to nature, and their 
dissolution to age.  Others believed both, among whom were those who, when 
they died, had their camel tied by their sepulchre, and so left, without meat 
or drink, to perish, and accompany them to the other world, lest they should 
be obliged, at the resurrection, to go on foot, which was reckoned very 
scandalous.2  Some believed a metem-psychosis, and that of the blood near the 
dead person's brain was formed a bird named Hāmah, which once in a hundred 
years visited the sepulchre; though others say this bird is animated by the 
soul of him that is unjustly slain, and continually cries, Oscūni, Oscūni, 
i.e., "give me to drink"-meaning of the murderer's blood-till his death be 
revenged, and then it flies away.  This was forbidden by the Korān to be 
   I might here mention several superstitious rites and customs of the ancient 
Arabs, some of which were abolished and others retained by Mohammed; but I 
apprehend it will be more convenient to take notice 

   6  Safio'ddin.		7  Poc. Spec. 97.		8  Abulfeda.		9  Ebn 
al Athir. al Jannab. &c.
10  Poc. Spec. 98.		11  Kor. c. 2.		12  Al Mostatraf, al 
Jauhari.		1  Al Mostatraf, al Jannābi.
2  Abulfarag, p. 160.	3  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 135.

of them, hereafter occasionally, as the negative or positive precepts of the 
Korān, forbidding or allowing such practices, shall be considered.
   Let us now turn our view from the idolatrous Arabs, to those among them who 
had embraced more rational religions.
   The Persians had, by their vicinity and frequent intercourse with the 
Arabians, introduced the Magian religion among some of their tribes, 
particularly that of Tamim,4 a long time before Mohammed, who was so far from 
being unacquainted with that religion, that he borrowed many of his own 
institutions from it, as will be observed in the progress of this work.  I 
refer those who are desirous to have some notion of Magism, to Dr. Hyde's 
curious account of it,5 a succinct abridgment of which may be read with much 
pleasure in another learned performance.6
   The Jews, who fled in great numbers into Arabia from the fearful 
destruction of their country by the Romans, made proselytes of several tribes, 
those of Kenānah, al Hareth Ebn Caaba, and Kendah1 in particular, and in time 
became very powerful, and possessed of several towns and fortresses there.  
But the Jewish religion was not unknown to the Arabs, at least above a century 
before; Abu Carb Asad, taken notice of in the Korān,2 who was king of Yaman, 
about 700 years before Mohammed, is said to have introduced Judaism among the 
idolatrous Hamyarites.  Some of his successors also embraced the same 
religion, one of whom, Yusef, surnamed Dhu Nowās,3 was remarkable for his zeal 
and terrible persecution of all who would not turn Jews, putting them to death 
by various tortures, the most common of which was throwing them into a glowing 
pit of fire, whence he had the opprobrious appellation of the Lord of the Pit.  
This persecution is also mentioned in the Korān.4
   Christianity had likewise made a very great progress among this nation 
before Mohammed.  Whether St. Paul preached in any part of Arabia, properly so 
called,5 is uncertain; but the persecutions and disorders which happened in 
the eastern church soon after the beginning of the third century, obliged 
great numbers of Christians to seek for shelter in that country of liberty, 
who, being for the most part of the Jacobite communion, that sect generally 
prevailed among the Arabs.6  The principal tribes that embraced Christianity 
were Hamyar, Ghassān, Rabiā, Taghlab, Bahrā, Tonūch,7 part of the tribes of 
Tay and Kodāa, the inhabitants of Najrān, and the Arabs of Hira.8  As to the 
two last, it may be observed that those of Najrān became Christians in the 
time of Dhu Nowās,9 and very probably, if the story be true, were some of 
those who were converted on the following occasion, which happened about that 
time, or not long before.  The Jews of Hamyar challenged some neighbouring 
Christians to a public disputation, which was held sub dio for three days 
before the king and his nobility and all the people, the disputants being 
Gregentius, bishop of Tephra (which I take to be Dhafār) for the Christians, 
and Herbanus for the Jews.  On the third day, Herbanus, to end the dispute, 

   4  Al Mostatraf.		5  In his Hist. Relig. Vet. Persar.		6  Dr. 
Prideaux's Connect. of the Hist. of the Old and New Test. part i. book 4.	
	1  Al Mostatraf.		2  Chap. 50.		3  See before, p. 8, and 
Baronii annal. ad sec. vi.		4  Chap. 85.		5  See Galat. i. 
17.		6  Abulfarag, p. 149.	7  Al Mostatraf.		8  Vide Poc. Spec. 
p. 137.		9  Al Jannab, apud Poc. Spec. p. 63.

manded that Jesus of Nazareth, if he were really living and in heaven, and 
could hear the prayers of his worshippers, should appear from heaven in their 
sight, and they would then believe in him; the Jews crying out with one voice, 
"Show us your Christ, alas! and we will become Christians."  Whereupon, after 
a terrible storm of thunder and lightning, Jesus Christ appeared in the air, 
surrounded with rays of glory, walking on a purple cloud, having a sword in 
his hand, and an inestimable diadem on his head, and spake these words over 
the heads of the assembly: "Behold I appear to you in your sight, I, who was 
crucified by your fathers."  After which the cloud received him from their 
sight.  The Christians cried out, "Kyrie eleeson," i.e., "Lord, have mercy 
upon us;" but the Jews were stricken blind, and recovered not till they were 
all baptized.1
   The Christians at Hira received a great accession by several tribes, who 
fled thither for refuge from the persecution of Dhu Nowās.  Al Nooman, 
surnamed Abu Kabūs, king of Hira, who was slain a few months before Mohammed's 
birth, professed himself a Christian on the following occasion.  This prince, 
in a drunken fit, ordered two of his intimate companions, who overcame with 
liquor had fallen asleep, to be buried alive.  When he came to himself, he was 
extremely concerned at what he had done, and to expiate his crime, not only 
raised a monument to the memory of his friends, but set apart two days, one of 
which he called the unfortunate, and the other the fortunate day; making it a 
perpetual rule to himself, that whoever met him on the former day should be 
slain, and his blood sprinkled on the monument, but he that met him on the 
other day should be dismissed in safety, with magnificent gifts.  On one of 
those unfortunate days there came before him accidentally an Arab, of the 
tribe of Tay, who had once entertained this king, when fatigued with hunting, 
and separated from his attendants.  The king, who could neither discharge him, 
contrary to the order of the day, nor put him to death, against the laws of 
hospitality, which the Arabians religiously observe, proposed, as an 
expedient, to give the unhappy man a year's respite, and to send him home with 
rich gifts for the support of his family, on condition that he found a surety 
for his returning at the year's end to suffer death.  One of the prince's 
court, out of compassion, offered himself as his surety, and the Arab was 
discharged.  When the last day of the term came, and no news of the Arab, the 
king, not at all displeased to save his host's life, ordered the surety to 
prepare himself to die.  Those who were by represented to the king that the 
day was not yet expired, and therefore he ought to have patience till the 
evening: but in the middle of their discourse the Arab appeared.  The king, 
admiring the man's generosity, in offering himself to certain death, which he 
might have avoided by letting his surety suffer, asked him what was his motive 
for his so doing? to which he answered, that he had been taught to act in that 
manner by the religion he professed; and al Nooman demanding what religion 
that was, he replied, the Christian.  Whereupon the king desiring to have the 
doctrines of Christianity explained to him, was baptized, he and his subjects; 
and not only pardoned the man and his surety, but 

1  Vide Gregentii disput. cum Herbano Judęo.

 abolished his barbarous custom.1  This prince, however, was not the first 
king of Hira who embraced Christianity; al Mondar, his grandfather, having 
also professed the same faith, and built large churches in his capital.2
   Since Christianity had made so great a progress in Arabia, we may 
consequently suppose they had bishops in several parts, for the more orderly 
governing of the churches.  A bishop of Dhafār has been already named, and we 
are told that Najrān was also a bishop's see.3  The Jacobites (of which sect 
we have observed the Arabs generally were) had two bishops of the Arabs 
subject to their Mafriān, or metropolitan of the east; one was called the 
bishop of the Arabs absolutely, whose seat was for the most part at Akula, 
which some others make the same with Cūfa,4 others a different town near 
Baghdād.5  The other had the title of bishop of the Scenite Arabs, of the 
tribe of Thaalab in Hira, or Hirta, as the Syrians call it, whose seat was in 
that city.  The Nestorians ahd but one bishop, who presided over both these 
dioceses of Hira and Akula, and was immediately subject to their patriarch.6
   These were the principal religions which obtained among the ancient Arabs; 
but as freedom of thought was the natural consequence of their political 
liberty and independence, some of them fell into other different opinions.  
The Koreish, in particular, were infected with Zendicism,7 an error supposed 
to have very near affinity with that of the Sadducees among the Jews, and, 
perhaps, not greatly different from Deism; for there were several of that 
tribe, even before the time of Mohammed, who worshipped one GOD, and were free 
from idolatry,8 and yet embraced none of the other religions of the country.
   The Arabians before Mohammed were, as they yet are, divided into two sorts, 
those who dwell in cities and towns, and those who dwell in tents.  The former 
lived by tillage, the cultivation of palm trees, breeding and feeding of 
cattle, and the exercise of all sorts of trades,1 particularly merchandising,2 
wherein they were very eminent, even in the time of Jacob.  The tribe of 
Koreish were much addicted to commerce, and Mohammed, in his younger years, 
was brought up to the same business; it being customary for the Arabians to 
exercise the same trade that their parents did.3  The Arabs who dwelt in 
tents, employed themselves in pasturage, and sometimes in pillaging of 
passengers; they lived chiefly on the milk and flesh of camels; they often 
changed their habitations, as the convenience of water and of pasture for 
their cattle invited them, staying in a place no longer than that lasted, and 
then removing in search of other.4  They generally wintered in Irāk and the 
confines of Syria.  This way of life is what the greater part of Ismael's 
posterity have used, as more agreeable to the temper and way of life of their 
father; and is so well described by a late author,5 that I cannot do better 
than refer the reader to his account of them.

   1  Al Meidani and Ahmed Ebn Yusef, apud Poc. Spec. p. 72.		2  
Abulfeda ap. eund. p. 74.		3  Safio'ddin apud Poc. Spec. p. 137.	
	4  Abulfarag in Chron. Syriac, MS.		5  Abulfeda in descr. Iracę.	
	6  Vide Assemani Bibl. Orient. T. 2. in Dissert. de Monophysitis, and p. 
459.		7  Al Mostatraf, apud Poc. Spec. p. 136.	
8  Vide Reland. de Relig. Moham. p. 270, and Millium de Mohammedismo ante 
Moham. p. 311.		1  These seem to be the same whom M. La Roque calls 
Moors.  Voy. dans la Palestine, p 110.		2  See Prideaux's Life of 
Mahomet, p. 6.		3  Strabo, l. 16, p. 1129.		4  Idem ibid. p. 
1084.		5  La Roque, Voy. dans la Palestine, p. 109, &c.

   The Arabic language is undoubtedly one of the most ancient in the world, 
and arose soon after, if not at, the confusion of Babel.  There were several 
dialects of it, very different from each other: the most remarkable were that 
spoken by the tribes of Hammyar and the other genuine Arabs, and that of the 
Koreish.  The Hamyaritic seems to have approached nearer ot the purity of the 
Syriac, than the dialect of any other tribe; for the Arabs acknowledge their 
father Yarab to have been the first whose tongue deviated from the Syriac 
(which was his mother tongue, and is almost generally acknowledged by the 
Asiatics to be the most ancient) to the Arabic.  The dialect of the Koreish is 
usually termed the pure Arabic, or, as the Korān, which is written in this 
dialect, calls it, the perspicuous and clear Arabic; perhaps, says Dr. Pocock, 
because Ismael, their father, brought the Arabic he had learned of the 
Jorhamites nearer to the original Hebrew.  But the politeness and elegance of 
the dialect of the Koreish, is rather to be attributed to their having the 
custody of the Caaba, and dwelling in Mecca, the centre of Arabia, as well 
more remote from intercourse with foreigners, who might corrupt their 
language, as frequented by the Arabs from the country all around, not only on 
a religious account, but also for the composing of their differences, from 
whose discourse and verses they took whatever words or phrases they judged 
more pure and elegant; by which means the beauties of the whole tongue became 
transfused into this dialect.  The Arabians are full of the commendations of 
their language, and not altogether without reason; for it claims the 
preference of most others in many respects, as being very harmonious and 
expressive, and withal so copious, that they say no man without inspiration 
can be a perfect master of it in its utmost extent; and yet they tell us, at 
the same time, that the greatest part of it has been lost; which will not be 
thought strange, if we consider how late the art of writing was practised 
among them.  For though it was known to Job,1 their countryman, and also the 
Hamyarites (who used a perplexed character called al Mosnad, wherein the 
letters were not distinctly separate, and which was neither publicly taught, 
nor suffered to be used without permission first obtained) many centuries 
before Mohammed, as appears from some ancient monuments, said to be remaining 
in their character; yet the other Arabs, and those of Mecca in particular, 
were, for many ages, perfectly ignorant of it, unless such of them as were 
Jews or Christians:2 Morāmer Ebn Morra of Anbar, a city of Irāk, who lived not 
many years before Mohammed, was the inventor of the Arabic character, which 
Bashar the Kendian is said to have learned from those of Anbar, and to have 
introduced at Mecca but a little while before the institution of Mohammedism.  
These letters of Marāmer were different from the Hamyaritic; and though they 
were very rude, being either the same with, or very much like the Cufic,3 
which character is still found in inscriptions and some ancient books, yet 
they were those which the Arabs used for many years, the Korān itself being at 
first written therein; for the beautiful character they now use was first 
formed from the Cufic by Ebn Moklah, Wazir (or Visir) to the Khalīfs al 
Moktader, al Kāher, and al Rādi, who lived

   1  Job xix. 23, 24.		2  See Prideaux's Life of Mahomet, p. 29, 30.	
	3  A specimen of the Cufic character may be seen in Sir J. Chardin's 
Travels, vol. iii, p. 119.

about three hundred years after Mohammed, and was brought to great perfection 
by Ali Ebn Bowāb,4 who flourished in the following century, and whose name is 
yet famous among them on that account; yet, it is said, the person who 
completed it, and reduced it to its present form, was Yakūt al Mostįsemi, 
secretary to al Mostįsem, the last of the Khalīfs of the family of Abbās, for 
which reason he was surnamed al Khattāt, or the Scribe.
   The accomplishments the Arabs valued themselves chiefly on, were, 1. 
Eloquence, and a perfect skill in their own tongue; 2. Expertness in the use 
of arms, and horsemanship; and 3. Hospitality.1  The first they exercised 
themselves in, by composing of orations and poems.  Their orations were of two 
sorts, metrical, or prosaic, the one being compared to pearls strung, and the 
other to loose ones.  They endeavoured to excel in both, and whoever was able, 
in an assembly, to persuade the people to a great enterprise, or dissuade them 
from a dangerous one, or gave them other wholesome advice, was honoured with 
the title of Khāteb, or orator, which is now given to the Mohammedan 
preachers.  They pursued a method very different from that of the Greek and 
Roman orators; their sentences being like loose gems, without connection, so 
that this sort of composition struck the audience chiefly by the fulness of 
the periods, the elegance of the expression, and the acuteness of the 
proverbial sayings; and so persuaded were they of their excelling in this way, 
that they would not allow any nation to understand the art of speaking in 
public, except themselves and the Persians; which last were reckoned much 
inferior in that respect to the Arabians.2  Poetry was in so great esteem 
among them, that it was a great accomplishment, and a proof of ingenuous 
extraction, to be able to express one's self in verse with ease and elegance, 
on any extraordinary occurrence; and even in their common discourse they made 
frequent applications to celebrated passages of their famous poets.  In their 
poems were preserved the distinction of descents, the rights of tribes, the 
memory of great actions, and the propriety of their language; for which 
reasons an excellent poet reflected an honour on his tribe, so that as soon as 
any one began to be admired for his performances of this kind in a tribe, the 
other tribes sent publicly to congratulate them on the occasion, and 
themselves made entertainments, at which the women assisted, dressed in their 
nuptial ornaments, singing to the sound of timbrels the happiness of their 
tribe, who had now one to protect their honour, to preserve their genealogies 
and the purity of their language, and to transmit their actions to posterity;3 
for this was all performed by their poems, to which they were solely obliged 
for their knowledge and instructions, moral and economical, and to which they 
had recourse, as to an oracle, in all doubts and differences.1  No wonder, 
then, that a public congratulation was made on this account, which honour they 
yet were so far from making cheap, that they never did it but on one of these 
three occasions, which were reckoned great points of felicity, viz., on the 
birth of a boy, the rise of a poet, and the

   4  Ebn Khalicān.  Yet others attribute the honour of the invention of this 
character to Ebn Moklah's brother, Abdallah al Hasan; and the perfecting of it 
to Ebn Amīd al Kāteb, after it had been reduced to near the present form by 
Abd'alhamīd.  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 590, 108, and 194.		1  
Poc. Orat. ante Carmen Tograi, p. 10.		2  Poc. Spec. 161.	
	3  Ebn Rashik, apud Poc. Spec. 160.	1  Poc. Orat. pręfix. Carm. Tograi, 
ubi supra.

fall of a foal of generous breed.  To keep up an emulation among their poets, 
the tribes had, once a year, a general assembly at Ocadh,2 a place famous on 
this account, and where they kept a weekly mart or fair, which was held on our 
Sunday.3  This annual meeting lasted a whole month, during which time they 
employed themselves, not only in trading, but in repeating their poetical 
compositions, contending an vieing with each other for the prize; whence the 
place, it is said, took its name.4  The poems that were judged to excel, were 
laid up in their kings' treasuries, as were the seven celebrated poems, thence 
called al Moallakāt, rather than from their being hung upon the Caaba, which 
honour they also had by public order, being written on Egyptian silk, and inn 
letters of gold; for which reason they had also the name of al Modhahabāt, or 
the golden verses.5
   The fair and assembly at Ocadh were suppressed by Mohammed, in whose time, 
and for some years after, poetry seems to have been in some degree neglected 
by the Arabs, who were then employed in their conquests; which being 
completed, and themselves at peace, not only this study was revived,6 but 
almost all sorts of learning were encouraged and greatly improved by them.  
This interruption, however, occasioned the loss of most of their ancient 
pieces of poetry, which were then chiefly preserved in memory; the use of 
writing being rare among them, in their time of ignorance.7  Though the Arabs 
were so early acquainted with poetry, they did not at first use to write poems 
of a just length, but only expressed themselves in verse occasionally; nor was 
their prosody digested into rules, till some time after Mohammed;8 for this 
was done, as it is said, by al Khalīl Ahmed al Farāhīdi, who lived in the 
reign of the Khalīf Harūn al Rashīd.9
   The exercise of arms and horsemanship they were in a manner obliged to 
practise and encourage, by reason of the independence of their tribes, whose 
frequent jarrings made wars almost continual; and they chiefly ended their 
disputes in field battles, it being a usual saying among them that GOD had 
bestowed four peculiar things on the Arabs-that their turbans should be to 
them instead of diadems, their tents instead of walls and houses, their swords 
instead of entrenchments, and their poems instead of written laws.1
   Hospitality was so habitual to them, and so much esteemed, that the 
examples of this kind among them exceed whatever can be produced from other 
nations.  Hatem, of the tribe of Tay,2 and Hasn, of that of Fezārah,3 were 
particularly famous on this account; and the contrary vice was so much in 
contempt, that a certain poet upbraids the inhabitants of Waset, as with the 
greatest reproach, that none of their men ad the heart to give, nor their 
women to deny.4

   2  Idem, Spec. p. 159.		3  Geogr. Nub. p. 51.		4  Poc. 
Spec. 159.		5  Ibid, and p. 381.  Et in calce Notar. in Carmen Tograi, 
p. 233.		6  Jallalo'ddin al Soyūti, apud Poc. Spec. p. 159, &c.	
	7  Ibid. 160.
8  Ibid. 161.  Al Safadi confirms this by a story of a grammarian named Abu 
Jaafar, who sitting by the Mikyas or Nilometer in Egypt, in a year when the 
Nile did not rise to its usual height, so that a famine was apprehended, and 
dividing a piece of poetry into its parts or feet, to examine them by the 
rules of art, some who passed by not understanding him, imagined he was 
uttering a charm to hinder the rise of the river, and pushed him into the 
water, where he lost his life.		9  Vide Clericum de Prosod. Arab. p. 
1  Pocock, in calce Notar. ad Carmen Tograi.		2  Vide. Gentii Notas in 
Gulistan Sheikh Sadi, p. 486, &c.	3  Poc. Spec. p. 48.	4  Ebn al 
Hobeirah, apud Poc. in not. ad Carmen Tograi, p. 107.

   Nor were the Arabs less propense to liberality after the coming of Mohammed 
than their ancestors had been.  I could produce many remarkable instances of 
this commendable quality among them,5 but shall content myself with the 
following.  Three men were disputing in the court of the Caaba, which was the 
most liberal person among the Arabs.  One gave the preference to Abdallah, the 
son of Jaafar, the uncle of Mohammed; another to Kais Ebn Saad Ebn Obādah; and 
the third gave it to Arābah, of the tribe of Aws.  After much debate, one that 
was present, to end the dispute, proposed that each of them should go to his 
friend and ask his assistance, that they might see what every one gave, and 
form a judgment accordingly.  This was agreed to; and Abdallah's friend, going 
to him, found him with his foot in the stirrup, just mounting his camel for a 
journey, and thus accosted him: "Son of the uncle of the apostle of GOD, I am 
travelling and in necessity."  Upon which Abdallah alighted, and bid him take 
the camel with all that was upon her, but desired him not to part with a sword 
which happened to be fixed to the saddle, because it had belonged to Ali, the 
son of Abutāleb.  So he took the camel, and found on her some vests of silk 
and 4,000 pieces of gold; but the thing of greatest value was the sword.  The 
second went to Kais Ebn Saad, whose servant told him that his master was 
asleep, and desired to know his business.  The friend answered that he came to 
ask Kais's assistance, being in want on the road.  Whereupon the servant said 
that he had rather supply his necessity than wake his master, and gave him a 
purse of 7,000 pieces of gold, assuring him that it was all the money then in 
the house.  He also directed him to go to those who had the charge of the 
camels, with a certain token, and take a camel and a slave, and return home 
with them.  When Kais awoke, and his servant informed him of what he had done, 
he gave him his freedom, and asked him why he did not call him, "For," says 
he, "I would have given him more."  The third man went to Arābah, and met him 
coming out of his house in order to go to prayers, and leaning on two slaves, 
because his eyesight failed him.  The friend no sooner made known his case, 
but Arābah let go the slaves, and clapping his hands together, loudly lamented 
his misfortune in having no money, but desired him to take the two slaves, 
which the man refused to do, till Arābah protested that if he would not accept 
of them he gave them their liberty, and leaving the slaves, groped his way 
along by the wall.  On the return of the adventurers, judgment was 
unanimously, and with great justice, given by all who were present, that 
Arābah was the most generous of the three.
   Nor were these the only good qualities of the Arabs; they are commended by 
the ancients for being most exact to their words,1 and respectful to their 
kindred.2  And they have always been celebrated for their quickness of 
apprehension and penetration, and the vivacity of their wit, especially those 
of the desert.3
   As the Arabs have their excellencies, so have they, like other nations, 
their defects and vices.  Their own writers acknowledge that they have

   5  Several may be found in D'Herbelot's Bibl. Orient., particularly in the 
articles of Hasan the son of Ali, Maan, Fadhel, and Ebn Yahya.		1  
Herodot. l.3, c. 8.		2  Strabo, l. 16, p. 1129.		3  Vide 
D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 121.

a natural disposition to war, bloodshed, cruelty, and rapine, being so much 
addicted to bear malice that they scarce ever forget an old grudge; which 
vindictive temper some physicians say is occasioned by their frequent feeding 
on camel's flesh (the ordinary diet of the Arabs of the desert, who are 
therefore observed to be most inclined to these vices), that creature being 
most malicious and tenacious of anger,4 which account suggests a good reason 
for a distinction of meats.
   The frequent robberies committed by these people on merchants and 
travellers have rendered the name of an Arab almost infamous in Europe; this 
they are sensible of, and endeavour to excuse themselves by alleging the hard 
usage of their father Ismael, who, being turned out of doors by Abraham, had 
the open plains and deserts given him by GOD for his patrimony, with 
permission to take whatever he could find there; and on this account they 
think they may, with a safe conscience, indemnify themselves as well as they 
can, not only on the posterity of Isaac, but also on everybody else, always 
supposing a sort of kindred between themselves and those they plunder.  And in 
relating their adventures of this kind, they think it sufficient to change the 
expression, and instead of "I robbed a man of such or such a thing," to say, 
"I gained it."1  We must not, however, imagine that they are the less honest 
for this among themselves, or towards those whom they receive as friends; on 
the contrary, the strictest probity is observed in their camp, where 
everything is open and nothing ever known to be stolen.2
   The sciences the Arabians chiefly cultivated before Mohammedism, were 
three; that of their genealogies and history, such a knowledge of the stars as 
to foretell the changes of weather, and the interpretation of dreams.3  They 
used to value themselves excessively on account of the nobility of their 
families, and so many disputes happened on that occasion, that it is no wonder 
if they took great pains in settling their descents.  What knowledge they had 
of the stars was gathered from long experience, and not from any regular 
study, or astronomical rules.4  The Arabians, as the Indians also did, chiefly 
applied themselves to observe the fixed stars, contrary to other nations, 
whose observations were almost confined to the planets, and they foretold 
their effects from their influences, not their nature; and hence, as has been 
said, arose the difference of the idolatry of the Greeks and Chaldeans, who 
chiefly worshipped the planets, and that of the Indians, who worshipped the 
fixed star.  The stars or asterisms they most usually foretold the weather by, 
were those they called Anwā, or the houses of the moon.  These are 28 in 
number, and divide the zodiac into as many parts, through one of which the 
moon passes every night;5 as some of them set in the morning, others rise 
opposite to them, which happens every thirteenth night; and from their rising 
and setting, the Arabs, by long experience, observed what changes happened in 
the air, and at length, as has been said, came to ascribe divine power to 
them; saying, that their rain was from such or such a star: which expression 
Mohammed condemned, and absolutely forbade them to use it in the old sense;

   4  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 87, Bochart, Hierozoic. l. 2, c. I.		1  
Voyage dans la Palest. p. 220, &c.		2  Ibid. p. 213, &c.		3  Al 
Shahrestani, apud Pocock Orat. ubi sup. p. 9, and Spec. 164.		4  
Abulfarag, p. 161.
5  Vide Hyde, in not. ad Tabulas stellar. fixar. Ulugh Beigh, p. 5.

unless they meant no more by it, than that GOD had so ordered the seasons, 
that when the moon was in such or such a mansion or house, or at the rising or 
setting of such and such a star, it should rain or be windy, hot or cold.1
   The old Arabians therefore seem to have made no further progress in 
astronomy, which science they afterwards cultivated with so much success and 
applause, than to observe the influence of the stars on the weather, and to 
give them names; and this it was obvious for them to do, by reason of their 
pastoral way of life, lying night and day in the open plains.  The names they 
imposed on the stars generally alluded to cattle and flocks, and they were so 
nice in distinguishing them, that no language has so many names of stars and 
asterisms as the Arabic; for though they have since borrowed the names of 
several constellations from the Greeks, yet the far greater part are of their 
own growth, and much more ancient, particularly those of the more conspicuous 
stars, dispersed in several constellations, and those of the lesser 
constellations which are contained within the greater, and were not observed 
or named by the Greeks.2
   Thus have I given the most succinct account I have been able, of the state 
of the ancient Arabians before Mohammed, or, to use their expression, in the 
time of ignorance.  I shall now proceed briefly to consider the state of 
religion in the east, and of the two great empires which divided that part of 
the world between them, at the time of Mohammed's setting up for a prophet, 
and what were the conducive circumstances and accidents that favoured his 




IF WE look into the ecclesiastical historians even from the third century, we 
shall find the Christian world to have then had a very different aspect from 
what some authors have represented; and so far from being endued with active 
graces, zeal, and devotion, and established within itself with purity of 
doctrine, union, and firm profession of the faith,1 that on the contrary, what 
by the ambition of the clergy, and what by drawing the abstrusest niceties 
into controversy, and dividing and subdividing about them into endless schisms 
and contentions, they had so destroyed that peace, love, and charity from 

   1  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 163, &c.		2  Vide Hyde ubi sup. p. 4.	
	1  Ricaut's State of the Ottoman Empire, p. 187.

them, which the Gospel was given to promote; and instead thereof continually 
provoked each other to that malice, rancour, and every evil work; that they 
had lost the whole substance of their religion, while they thus eagerly 
contended for their own imaginations concerning it; and in a manner quite 
drove Christianity out of the world by those very controversies in which they 
disputed with each other about it.2  In these dark ages it was that most of 
those superstitions and corruptions we now justly abhor in the church of Rome 
were not only broached, but established; which gave great advantages to the 
propagation of Mohammedism.  The worship of saints and images, in particular, 
was then arrived at such a scandalous pitch that it even surpassed whatever is 
now practised among the Romanists.3
   After the Nicene council, the eastern church was engaged in perpetual 
controversies, and torn to pieces by the disputes of the Arians, Sabellians, 
Nestorians, and Eutychians: the heresies of the two last of which have been 
shown to have consisted more in the words and form of expression than in the 
doctrines themselves;4 and were rather the pretences than real motives of 
those frequent councils to and from which the contentious prelates were 
continually riding post, that they might bring everything to their own will 
and pleasure.1  And to support themselves by dependants and bribery, the 
clergy in any credit at court undertook the protection of some officer in the 
army, under the colour of which justice was publicly sold, and all corruption 
   In the western church Damasus and Ursicinus carried their contests at Rome 
for the episcopal seat so high, that they came to open violence and murder, 
which Viventius the governor not being able to suppress, he retired into the 
country, and left them to themselves, till Damasus prevailed.  It is said that 
on this occasion, in the church of Sicininus, there were no less than 137 
found killed in one day.  And no wonder they were so fond of these seats, when 
they became by that means enriched by the presents of matrons, and went abroad 
in their chariots and sedans in great state, feasting sumptuously even beyond 
the luxury of princes, quite contrary to the way of living of the country 
prelates, who alone seemed to have some temperance and modesty left.2
   These dissensions were greatly owing to the emperors, and particularly to 
Constantius, who, confounding the pure and simple Christian religion with 
anile superstitions, and perplexing it with intricate questions, instead of 
reconciling different opinions, excited many disputes, which he fomented as 
they proceeded with infinite altercations.3  This grew worse in the time of 
Justinian, who, not to be behind the bishops to the fifth and sixth centuries 
in zeal, thought it no crime to condemn to death a man of a different 
persuasion from his own.4
   This corruption of doctrine and morals in the princes and clergy, was 
necessarily followed by a general depravity of the people;5 those of all 
conditions making it their sole business to get money by any means,

   2  Prideaux's preface to his Life of Mahomet.		3  Vide La Vie de 
Mahommed, par Boulainvilliers, p. 219, &c.	
4  Vide Simon, Hist. Crit. de la Créance, &c. des Nations du Levant.	
	1  Ammian. Marcellin. l. 2I.  Vide etiam Euseb. Hist. Eccles. l. 8, c. 
I.  Sozom. l. I, c. 114, &c.  Hilar. and Sulpic. Sever. in Hist. Sacr. p. 112, 
&c.		2  Ammian.  Marcellin. lib. 27.
3  Idem, l. 2I.		4  Procop. in Anecd. p. 60.		5  See an instance 
of the wickedness of the Christian army, even when they were under the terror 
of the Saracens, in Ockley's Hist. of the Sarac., vol. i. p. 239.

and then to squander it away when they had got it in luxury and debauchery.6
   But, to be more particular as to the nation we are now writing of, Arabia 
was of old famous for heresies;7 which might be in some measure attributed to 
the liberty and independency of the tribes.  Some of the Christians of that 
nation believed the soul died with the body, and was to be raised again with 
it at the last day:1 these Origen is said to have convinced.2  Among the Arabs 
it was that the heresies of Ebion, Beryllus, and the Nazaręns,3 and also that 
of the Collyridians, were broached, or at least propagated; the latter 
introduced the Virgin Mary for GOD, or worshipped her as such, offering her a 
sort of twisted cake called collyris, whence the sect had its name.4
   This notion of the divinity of the Virgin Mary was also believed by some at 
the council of Nice, who said there were two gods besides the Father, viz., 
Christ and the Virgin Mary, and were thence named Mariamites.5  Others 
imagined her to be exempt from humanity, and deified; which goes but little 
beyond the Popish superstition in calling her the complement of the Trinity, 
as if it were imperfect without her.  This foolish imagination is justly 
condemned in the Korān6 as idolatrous, and gave a handle to Mohammed to attack 
the Trinity itself.
   Other sects there were of many denominations within the borders of Arabia, 
which took refuge there from the proscriptions of the imperial edicts; several 
of whose notions Mohammed incorporated with his religion, as may be observed 
   Though the Jews were an inconsiderable and despised people in other parts 
of the world, yet in Arabia, whither many of them fled from the destruction of 
Jerusalem, they grew very powerful, several tribes and princes embracing their 
religion; which made Mohammed at first show great regard to them, adopting 
many of their opinions, doctrines, and customs; thereby to draw them, if 
possible, into his interest.  But that people, agreeably to their wonted 
obstinacy, were so far from being his proselytes, that they were some of the 
bitterest enemies he had, waging continual war with him, so that their 
reduction cost him infinite trouble and danger, and at last his life.  This 
aversion of theirs created at length as great a one in him to them, so that he 
used them, for the latter part of his life, much worse than he did the 
Christians, and frequently exclaims against them in his Korān; his followers 
to this day observe the same difference between them and the Christians, 
treating the former as the most abject and contemptible people on earth.
   It has been observed by a great politician,7 that it is impossible a person 
should make himself a prince and found a state without opportunities.  If the 
distracted state of religion favoured the designs of Mohammed on that side, 
the weakness of the Roman and Persian monarchies might flatter him with no 
less hopes in any attempt on those once formidable empires, either of which, 
had they been in their full vigour, must have crushed Mohammedism in its 
birth; whereas nothing nourished it more than the success the Arabians met 
with in

   6  Vide Boulainvill. Vie de Mahom. ubi sup.		7  Vide Sozomen. Hist. 
Eccles. l. r, c. 16, 17. Sulpic. Sever. ubi supra.
1  Euseb. Hist. Eccles. l. 6, c. 33.			2  Idem ibid. c. 37.	
	3  Epiphan. de Hęresi. l, I; Hęr. 40.
4  Idem ibid. l. 3; Hęres. 75, 79.			5  Elmacin.  Eutych.		
	6  Cap. 5.	
7  Machiavelli, Princ. c. 6, p. 19.

their enterprises against those powers, which success they failed not to 
attribute to their new religion and the divine assistance thereof.
   The Roman empire declined apace after Constantine, whose successors were 
for the generality remarkable for their ill qualities, especially cowardice 
and cruelty.  By Mohammed's time, the western half of the empire was overrun 
by the Goths; and the eastern so reduced by the Huns on the one side, and the 
Persians on the other, that it was not in a capacity of stemming the violence 
of a powerful invasion.  The emperor Maurice paid tribute to the Khagān or 
king of the Huns; and after Phocas had murdered his master, such lamentable 
havoc there was among the soldiers, that when Heraclius came, not above seven 
years after, to muster the army, there were only two soldiers left alive, of 
all those who had borne arms when Phocas first usurped the empire.  And though 
Heraclius was a prince of admirable courage and conduct, and had done what 
possibly could be done to restore the discipline of the army, and had had 
great success against the Persians, so as to drive them not only out of his 
own dominions, but even out of part of their own; yet still the very vitals of 
the empire seemed to be mortally wounded; that there could no time have 
happened more fatal to the empire or more favourable to the enterprises of the 
Arabs, who seem to have been raised up on purpose by GOD, to be a scourge to 
the Christian church, for not living answerably to that most holy religion 
which they had received.1
   The general luxury and degeneracy of manners into which the Grecians were 
sunk, also contributed not a little to the enervating their forces, which were 
still further drained by those two great destroyers, monachism and 
   The Persians had also been in a declining condition for some time before 
Mohammed, occasioned chiefly by their intestine broils and dissensions; great 
part of which arose from the devilish doctrines of Manes and Mazdak.  The 
opinions of the former are tolerably well known: the latter lived in the reign 
of Khosru Kobād, and pretended himself a prophet sent from GOD to preach a 
community of women and possessions, since all men were brothers and descended 
from the same common parents.  This he imagined would put an end to all feuds 
and quarrels among men, which generally arose on account of one of the two.  
Kobād himself embraced the opinions of this impostor, to whom he gave leave, 
according to his new doctrine, to lie with the queen his wife; which 
permission Anushirwān, his son, with much difficulty prevailed on Mazdak not 
to make use of.  These sects had certainly been the immediate ruin of the 
Persian empire, had not Anushirwān, as soon as he succeeded his father, put 
Mazdek to death with all his followers, and the Manicheans also, restoring the 
ancient Magian religion.2
   In the reign of this prince, deservedly surnamed the Just, Mohammed was 
born.  He was the last king of Persia who deserved the throne, which after him 
was almost perpetually contended for, till subverted by the Arabs.  His son 
Hormūz lost the love of his subjects by his excessive cruelty; having had his 
eyes put out by his wife's brothers, he was

	1  Ockley's Hist. of the Saracens, vol. i. p. 19, &c.	2  Vide Poc. Spec. 
p. 70.

obliged to resign the crown to his son Khosrū Parvīz, who at the instigation 
of Bahrām Chubīn had rebelled against him, and was afterwards strangled.  
Parvīz was soon obliged to quit the throne to Bahrām; but obtaining succours 
of the Greek emperor Maurice, he recovered the crown: yet towards the latter 
end of a long reign he grew so tyrannical and hateful to his subjects, that 
they held private correspondence with the Arabs; and he was at length deposed, 
imprisoned, and slain by his son Shirūyeh.1  After Parvīz no less than six 
princes possessed the throne in less than six years.  These domestic broils 
effectually brought ruin upon the Persians; for though they did rather by the 
weakness of the Greeks, than their own force, ravage Syria, and sack Jerusalem 
and Damascus under Khosrū Parvīz; and, while the Arabs were divided and 
independent, had some power in the province of Yaman, where they set up the 
four last kings before Mohammed; yet when attacked by the Greeks under 
Heraclius, they not only lost their new conquests, but part of their own 
dominions; and no sooner were the Arabs united by Mohammedism, than they beat 
them in every battle, and in a few years totally subdued them.
   As these empires were weak and declining, so Arabia, at Mohammed's setting 
up, was strong and flourishing; having been peopled at the expense of the 
Grecian empire, whence the violent proceedings of the domineering sects forced 
many to seek refuge in a free country, as Arabia then was, where they who 
could not enjoy tranquility and their conscience at home, found a secure 
retreat.  The Arabians were not only a populous nation, but unacquainted with 
the luxury and delicacies of the Greeks and Persians, and inured to hardships 
of all sorts; living in a most parsimonious manner, seldom eating any flesh, 
drinking no wine, and sitting on the ground.  Their political government was 
also such as favoured the designs of Mohammed; for the division and 
independency of their tribes were so necessary to the first propagation of his 
religion, and the foundation of his power, that it would have been scarce 
possible for him to have effected either, had the Arabs been united in one 
society.  But when they had embraced his religion, the consequent union of 
their tribes was no less necessary and conducive to their future conquests and 
   This posture of public affairs in the eastern world, both as to its 
religious and political state, it is more than probably Mohammed was well 
acquainted with; he having had sufficient opportunities of informing himself 
in those particulars, in his travels as a merchant in his younger years: and 
though it is not to be supposed his views at first were so extensive as 
afterwards, when they were enlarged by his good fortune, yet he might 
reasonably promise himself success in his first attempts from thence.  As he 
was a man of extraordinary parts and address, he knew how to make the best of 
every incident, and turn what might seem dangerous to another, to his own 
   Mohammed came into the world under some disadvantages, which he soon 
surmounted.  His father Abd'allah was a younger son2 of Abd'almotalleb, and 
dying very young and in his father's lifetime, left

   1  Vide Teixeira, Relaciones de los Reyes de Persia, p. 195, &c.	
	2  He was not his eldest son, as Dr. Prideaux tells us, whose 
reflections built on that foundation must necessarily fail (see his Life of 
Mahomet, p. 9); nor yet his youngest son, as M. De Boulainvilliers (Vie de 
Mahommed, p. 182, &c) supposes; for Hamza and al Abbās were both younger than 

his widow and infant son in very mean circumstances, his whole substance 
consisting but of five camels and one Ethiopian she-slave.1  Abd'almotalleb 
was therefore obliged to take care of his grandchild Mohammed, which he not 
only did during his life, but at his death enjoined his eldest son Abu Tāleb, 
who was brother to Abd'allah by the same mother, to provide for him for the 
future; which he very affectionately did, and instructed him in the business 
of a merchant, which he followed; and to that end he took him with him into 
Syria when he was but thirteen, and afterward recommended him to Khadījah, a 
noble and rich widow, for her factor, in whose service he behaved himself so 
well, that by making him her husband she soon raised him to an equality with 
the richest in Mecca.
   After he began by this advantageous match to live at his ease, it was that 
he formed the scheme of establishing a new religion, or, as he expressed it, 
of replanting the only true and ancient one, professed by Adam, Noah, Abraham, 
Moses, Jesus, and all the prophets,2 by destroying the gross idolatry into 
which the generality of his countrymen had fallen, and weeding out the 
corruptions and superstitions which the latter Jews and Christians had, as he 
thought, introduced into their religion, and reducing it to its original 
purity, which consisted chiefly in the worship of the one only GOD.
   Whether this was the effect of enthusiasm, or only a design to raise 
himself to the supreme government of his country, I will not pretend to 
determine.  The latter is the general opinion of the Christian writers, who 
agree that ambition, and the desire of satisfying his sensuality, were the 
motives of his undertaking.  It may be so; yet his first views, perhaps, were 
not so interested.  His original design of bringing the pagan Arabs to the 
knowledge of the true GOD, was certainly noble, and highly to be commended; 
for I cannot possibly subscribe to the assertion of a late learned writer,3 
that he made the nation exchange their idolatry for another religion 
altogether as bad.  Mohammed was no doubt fully satisfied in his conscience of 
the truth of his grand point, the unity of GOD, which was what he chiefly 
attended to; all his other doctrines and institutions being rather accidental 
and unavoidable, than premeditated and designed.
   Since then Mohammed was certainly himself persuaded of his grand article of 
faith, which, in his opinion, was violated by all the rest of the world; not 
only by the idolaters, but by the Christians, as well those who rightly 
worshipped Jesus as GOD, as those who superstitiously adored the Virgin Mary, 
saints, and images; and also by the Jews, who are accused in the Korān of 
taking Ezra for the son of GOD;4 it is easy to conceive that he might think it 
a meritorious work to rescue the world from such ignorance and superstition; 
and by degrees, with the help of a warm imagination, which an Arab seldom 
wants,5 to suppose himself destined by providence for the effecting that great 
reformation.  And this fancy of his might take still deeper root in his mind, 
during the solitude he thereupon affected, usually retiring for a month in the 
year to a cave in Mount Hara, near Mecca.  One thing which may be probably 
urged against the enthusiasm of this prophet of

   1  Abulfeda, Vit. Moham. p. 2.		2  See Kor. c. 2.		3  
Prideaux's Life of Mahomet, p. 76.		4  Kor. c. 9.		5  See 
Casaub. of Enthusiasm, p. 148.

the Arabs, is the wise conduct and great prudence he all along showed in 
pursuing his design, which seem inconsistent with the wild notions of a hot-
brained religionist.  But though all enthusiasts or madmen do not behave with 
the same gravity and circumspection that he did, yet he will not be the first 
instance, by several, of a person who has been out of the way only quoad hoc, 
and in all other respects acted with the greatest decency and precaution.
   The terrible destruction of the eastern churches, once so glorious and 
flourishing, by the sudden spreading of Mohammedism, and the great successes 
of its professors against the Christians, necessarily inspire a horror of that 
religion in those to whom it has been so fatal; and no wonder if they 
endeavour to set the character of its founder, and its doctrines, in the most 
infamous light.  But the damage done by Mohammed to Christianity seems to have 
been rather owing to his ignorance than malice; for his great misfortune was, 
his not having a competent knowledge of the real and pure doctrines of the 
Christian religion, which was in his time so abominably corrupted, that it is 
not surprising if he went too far, and resolved to abolish what he might think 
incapable of reformation.
   It is scarce to be doubted but that Mohammed had a violent desire of being 
reckoned an extraordinary person, which he could attain to by no means more 
effectually, than by pretending to be a messenger sent from GOD, to inform 
mankind of his will.  This might be at first his utmost ambition; and had his 
fellow-citizens treated him less injuriously, and not obliged him by their 
persecutions to seek refuge elsewhere, and to take up arms against them in his 
own defence, he had perhaps continued a private person, and contented himself 
with the veneration and respect due to his prophetical office; but being once 
got at the head of a little army, and encouraged by success, it is no wonder 
if he raised his thoughts to attempt what had never before entered his 
   That Mohammed was, as the Arabs are by complexion,1 a great lover of women, 
we are assured by his own confession; and he is constantly upbraided with it 
by the controversial writers, who fail not to urge the number of women with 
whom he had to do, as a demonstrative argument of his sensuality, which they 
think sufficiently proves him to have been a wicked man, and consequently an 
impostor.  But it must be considered that polygamy, though it be forbidden by 
the Christian religion, was in Mohammed's time frequently practised in Arabia 
and other parts of the east, and was not counted an immorality, nor was a man 
worse esteemed on that account; for which reason Mohammed permitted the 
plurality of wives, with certain limitations, among his own followers, who 
argue for the lawfulness of it from several reasons, and particularly from the 
examples of persons allowed on all hands to have been good men; some of  whom 
have been honoured with the divine correspondence.  The several laws relating 
to marriages and divorces, and the peculiar privileges granted to Mohammed in 
his Korān, were almost all taken by him from the Jewish decisions, as will 
appear hereafter; and therefore he might think those

1  Ammian.  Marcell. l. 14, c. 4.

institutions the more just and reasonable, as he found them practised or 
approved by the professors of a religion which was confessedly of divine 
   But whatever were his motives, Mohammed had certainly the personal 
qualifications which were necessary to accomplish his undertaking.  The 
Mohammedan authors are excessive in their commendations of him, and speak much 
of his religious and moral virtues; as his piety, veracity, justice, 
liberality, clemency, humility, and abstinence.  His charity, in particular, 
they say, was so conspicuous, that he had seldom any money in his house, 
keeping no more for his own use than was just sufficient to maintain his 
family; and he frequently spared even some part of his own provisions to 
supply the necessities of the poor; so that before the year's end he had 
generally little or nothing left:1 "GOD," says al Bokhāri, "offered him the 
keys of the treasures of the earth, but he would not accept them."  Though the 
eulogies of these writers are justly to be suspected of partiality, yet thus 
much, I think, may be inferred from thence, that for an Arab who had been 
educated in Paganism, and had but a very imperfect knowledge of his duty, he 
was a man of at least tolerable morals, and not such a monster of wickedness 
as he is usually represented.  And indeed it is scarce possible to conceive, 
that a wretch of so profligate a character should ever have succeeded in an 
enterprise of this nature; a little hypocrisy and saving of appearances, at 
least, must have been absolutely necessary; and the sincerity of his 
intentions is what I pretend not to inquire into.
   He had indisputably a very piercing and sagacious wit, and was thoroughly 
versed in all the arts of insinuation.2  The eastern historians describe him 
to have been a man of an excellent judgment, and a happy memory; and these 
natural parts were improved by a great experience and knowledge of men, and 
the observations he had made in his travels.  They say he was a person of few 
words, of an equal cheerful temper, pleasant and familiar in conversation, of 
inoffensive behaviour towards his friends, and of great condescension towards 
his inferiors.3  To all which were joined a comely agreeable person, and a 
polite address; accomplishments of no small service in preventing those in his 
favour whom he attempted to persuade.
   As to acquired learning, it is confessed he had none at all; having had no 
other education than what was customary in his tribe, who neglected, and 
perhaps despised, what we call literature; esteeming no language in comparison 
with their own, their skill in which they gained by use and not by books, and 
contenting themselves with improving their private experience by committing to 
memory such passages of their poets as they judged might be of use to them in 
life.  This defect was so far from being prejudicial or putting a stop to his 
design, that he made the greatest use of it; insisting that the writings which 
he produced as revelations from GOD, could not possibly be a forgery of his 
own; because it was not conceivable that a person who could neither write nor 
read should be able to compose a book of such excellent doctrine, and in so 
elegant a style; and thereby obviating

   1  Vide Abulfeda Vit. Moham. p. 144, &c.		2  Vide Prid. Life of 
Mahomet, p. 105.			3  Vide Abulfed. ubi sup.

an objection that might have carried a great deal of weight.1  And for this 
reason his followers, instead of being ashamed of their master's ignorance, 
glory in it, as an evident proof of his divine mission, and scruple not to 
call him (as he is indeed called in the Korān itself2) the "illiterate 
   The scheme of religion which Mohammed framed, and the design and artful 
contrivance of those written revelations (as he pretended them to be) which 
compose his Korān, shall be the subject of the following sections: I shall 
therefore in the remainder of this relate, as briefly as possible, the steps 
he took towards the effecting of his enterprise, and the accidents which 
concurred to his success therein.
   Before he made any attempt abroad, he rightly judged that it was necessary 
for him to begin by the conversion of his own household.  Having therefore 
retired with his family, as he had done several times before, to the above-
mentioned cave in Mount Hara, he there opened the secret of his mission to his 
wife Khadījah; and acquainted her that the angel Gabriel had just before 
appeared to him, and told him that he was appointed the apostle of GOD: he 
also repeated to her a passage3 which he pretended had been revealed to him by 
the ministry of the angel, with those other circumstances of his first 
appearance, which are related by the Mohammedan writers.  Khadījah received 
the news with great joy,1 swearing by him in whose hands her soul was, that 
she trusted he would be the prophet of his nation, and immediately 
communicated what she had heard to her cousin, Warakah Ebn Nawfal, who, being 
a Christian, could write in the Hebrew character, and was tolerably well 
versed in the scriptures;2 and he as readily came into her opinion, assuring 
her that the same angel who had formerly appeared unto Moses was now sent to 
Mohammed.3  This first overture the prophet made in the month of Ramadān, in 
the fortieth year of his age, which is therefore usually called the year of 
his mission.
   Encouraged by so good a beginning, he resolved to proceed, and try for some 
time what he could do by private persuasion, not daring to hazard the whole 
affair by exposing it too suddenly to the public.  He soon made proselytes of 
those under his own roof, viz., his wife Khadījah, his servant Zeid Ebn 
Hāretha (to whom he gave his freedom4 on that occasion, which afterwards 
became a rule to his followers), and his cousin and pupil Ali, the son of Abu 
Tāleb, though then very young: but this last, making no account of the other 
two, used to style himself the "first of believers."  The next person Mohammed 
applied to was Abdallah Ebn Abi Kohāfa, surnamed Abu Becr, a man of great 
authority among the Koreish, and one whose interest he well knew would be of 
great service to him, as it soon appeared, for Abu Becr being gained over, 
prevailed also on Othmān Ebn Affān, Abd'alrahmān Ebn Awf, Saad Ebn Abi Wakkās, 
al Zobeir Ebn al Awām, and Telha Ebn Obeid'allah, all principal men in Mecca, 
to follow his example.

   1  See Kor. c. 29.  Prid. Life of Mahomet, p. 28, &c.		2  Chap. 7.	
	3  This passage is generally agreed to be the first five verses of the 
96th chapter.			1  I do not remember to have read in any eastern 
author, that Khadījah ever rejected her husband's pretences as delusions, or 
suspected him of any imposture.  Yet see Prideaux's Life of Mahomet, p. 11, 
&c.		2  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 157.			3  Vide Abulfed.  Vit. 
Moham. p. 16, where the learned translator has mistaken the meaning of this 
passage.		4  For he was his purchased slave, as Abulfeda expressly 
tells us, and not his cousin-german, as M. de Boulainvill. asserts (Vie de 
Mah. p. 273).

These men were the six chief companions, who, with a few more, were converted 
in the space of three years, at the end of which, Mohammed having, as he 
hoped, a sufficient interest to support him, made his mission no longer a 
secret, but gave out that GOD had commanded him to admonish his near 
relations;5 and in order to do it with more convenience and prospect of 
success, he directed Ali to prepare an entertainment, and invite the sons and 
descendants of Abd'almotalleb, intending then to open his mind to them; this 
was done, and about forty of them came; but Abu Laheb, one of his uncles, 
making the company break up before Mohammed had an opportunity of speaking, 
obliged him to give them a second invitation the next day; and when they were 
come, he made them the following speech: "I know no man in all Arabia who can 
offer his kindred a more excellent thing than I now do you.  I offer you 
happiness, both in this life and in that which is to come.  GOD Almighty hath 
commanded me to call you unto him; who therefore among you will be assisting 
to me herein, and become my brother and my vicegerent?"  All of them 
hesitating, and declining the matter, Ali at length rose up and declared that 
he would be his assistant, and vehemently threatened those who should oppose 
him.  Mohammed upon this embraced Ali with great demonstrations of affection, 
and desired all who were present to hearken to and obey him as his deputy, at 
which the company broke out into great laughter, telling Abu Tāleb that he 
must now pay obedience to his son.
   This repulse however was so far from discouraging Mohammed, that he began 
to preach in public to the people, who heard him with some patience, till he 
came to upbraid them with the idolatry, obstinacy, and perverseness of 
themselves and their fathers, which so highly provoked them that they declared 
themselves his enemies, and would soon have procured his ruin had he not been 
protected by Abu Tāleb.  The chief of the Koreish warmly solicited this person 
to desert his nephew, making frequent remonstrances against the innovations he 
was attempting, which proving ineffectual, they at length threatened him with 
an open rupture if he did not prevail on Mohammed to desist.  At this, Abu 
Tāleb was so far moved that he earnestly dissuaded his nephew from pursuing 
the affair any farther, representing the great danger he and his friends must 
otherwise run.  But Mohammed was not to be intimidated, telling his uncle 
plainly "that if they set the sun against him on his right hand, and the moon 
on his left, he would not leave his enterprise;" and Abu Tāleb, seeing him so 
firmly resolved to proceed, used no further arguments, but promised to stand 
by him against all his enemies.6
   The Koreish, finding they could prevail neither by fair words nor menaces, 
tried what they could do by force and ill-treatment, using Mohammed's 
followers so very injuriously that it was not safe for them to continue at 
Mecca any longer: whereupon Mohammed gave leave to such of them as had not 
friends to protect them, to seek for refuge elsewhere.  And accordingly, in 
the fifth year of the prophet's mission, sixteen of them, four of whom were 
women, fled into Ethiopia; and among them Othmān Ebn Affān and his wife 
Rakīah, Mohammed's

		5  Kor. c. 74.  See the notes thereon.		6  Abulfeda ubi 

daughter.  This was the first flight; but afterwards several others followed 
them, retiring one after another, to the number of eighty-three men and 
eighteen women, besides children.1  These refugees were kindly received by the 
Najāshi,2 or king of Ethiopia, who refused to deliver them up to those whom 
the Koreish sent to demand them, and, as the Arab writers unanimously attest, 
even professed the Mohammedan religion.
   In the sixth year of his mission3 Mohammed had the pleasure of seeing his 
party strengthened by the conversion of his uncle Hamza, a man of great valour 
and merit, and of Omar Ebn al Khattāb, a person highly esteemed, and once a 
violent opposer of the prophet.  As persecution generally advances rather than 
obstructs the spreading of a religion, Islamism made so great a progress among 
the Arab tribes, that the Koreish, to suppress it effectually, if possible, in 
the seventh year of Mohammed's mission,4 made a solemn league or covenant 
against the Hashemites and the family of al Motalleb, engaging themselves to 
contract no marriages with any of them, and to have no communication with 
them; and to give it the greater sanction, reduced it into writing, and laid 
it up in the Caaba.  Upon this the tribe became divided into two factions; and 
the family of Hashem all repaired to Abu Tāleb, as their head; except only 
Abd'al Uzza, surnamed Abu Laheb, who, out of his inveterate hatred to his 
nephew and his doctrine, went over to the opposite party, whose chief was Abu 
Sofiān Ebn Harb, of the family of Ommeya.
   The families continued thus at variance for three years; but in the tenth 
year of his mission, Mohammed told his uncle Abu Tāleb that GOD had manifestly 
showed his disapprobation of the league which the Koreish had made against 
them, by sending a worm to eat out every word of the instrument except the 
name of GOD.  Of this accident Mohammed had probably some private notice; for 
Abu Tāleb went immediately to the Koreish and acquainted them with it; 
offering, if it proved false, to deliver his nephew up to them; but in case it 
were true, he insisted that they ought to lay aside their animosity, and annul 
the league they had made against the Hashemites.  To this they acquiesced, and 
going to inspect the writing, to their great astonishment found it to be as 
Abu Tāleb had said; and the league was thereupon declared void.
   In the same year Abu Tāleb died, at the age of above fourscore; and it is 
the general opinion that he died an infidel, though others say that when he 
was at the point of death he embraced Mohammedism, and produce some passages 
out of his poetical compositions to confirm their assertion.  About a month, 
or as some write, three days after the death of this great benefactor and 
patron, Mohammed had the additional mortification to lose his wife Khadījah, 
who had so generously made his fortune.  For which reason this year is called 
the year of mourning.5
   On the death of these two persons the Koreish began to be more troublesome 
than ever to their prophet, and especially some who had formerly been his 
intimate friends; insomuch that he found himself

   1  Idem, Ebn Shohnah.		2  Dr. Prideaux seems to take this word 
for a proper name, but it is only the title the Arabs give to every king of 
this country.  See his Life of Mahomet, p. 55		3  Ebn Shohnah	
	4  Al Jannābi.
1  Abulfed. p. 28.  Ebn Shohnah.

obliged to seek for shelter elsewhere, and first pitched upon Tāyet, about 
sixty miles east from Mecca, for the place of his retreat.  Thither therefore 
he went, accompanied by his servant Zeid, and applied himself to two of the 
chief of the tribe of Thakīf, who were the inhabitants of that place; but they 
received him very coldly.  However, he stayed there a month; and some of the 
more considerate and better sort of men treated him with a little respect: but 
the slaves and inferior people at length rose against him, and bringing him to 
the wall of the city, obliged him to depart and return to Mecca, where he put 
himself under the protection of al Motįam Ebn Adi.2
   This repulse greatly discouraged his followers: however, Mohammed was not 
wanting to himself, but boldly continued to preach to the public assemblies at 
the pilgrimage, and gained several proselytes, and among them six of the 
inhabitants of Yathreb of the Jewish tribe of Khazraj, who on their return 
home failed not to speak much in commendation of their new religion, and 
exhorted their fellow-citizens to embrace the same.
   In the twelfth year of his mission it was that Mohammed gave out that he he 
had made his night journey from Mecca to Jerusalem and thence to heaven,3 so 
much spoken of by all that write of him.  Dr. Prideaux4 thinks he invented it 
either to answer the expectations of those who demanded some miracle as a 
proof of his mission, or else, by pretending to have conversed with GOD, to 
establish the authority of whatever he should think fit to leave behind by way 
of oral tradition, and make his sayings to serve the same purpose as the oral 
law of the Jews.  But I do not find that Mohammed himself ever expected so 
great a regard should be paid to his sayings, as his followers have since 
done; and seeing he all along disclaimed any power of performing miracles, it 
seems rather to have been a fetch of policy to raise his reputation, by 
pretending to have actually conversing with GOD in heaven, as Moses had 
heretofore done in the mount, and to have received several institutions 
immediately from him, whereas before he contented himself with persuading them 
that he had all by the ministry of Gabriel.
   However, this story seemed so absurd and incredible, that several of his 
followers left him upon it, and it had probably ruined the whole design, had 
not Abu Becr vouched for his veracity, and declared that if Mohammed affirmed 
it to be true, he verily believed the whole.  Which happy incident not only 
retrieved the prophet's credit, but increased it to such a degree, that he was 
secure of being able to make his disciples swallow whatever he pleased to 
impose on them for the future.  And I am apt to think this fiction, 
notwithstanding its extravagance, was one of the most artful contrivances 
Mohammed ever put in practice, and what chiefly contributed to the raising of 
his reputation to that great height to which it afterwards arrived.
   In this year, called by the Mohammedans the accepted year, twelve men of 
Yathreb or Medina, of whom ten were of the tribe of Khazraj, and the other two 
of that of Aws, came to Mecca, and took an oath of fidelity to Mohammed at al 
Akaba, a hill on the north of that city.  This oath was called the women's 
oath, not that any women were pre-

   2  Ebn Shohnah.		3  See the notes on the 17th chapter of the 
Korān.		4  Life o Mahomet, p. 41, 51, &c.

sent at this time, but because a man was not thereby obliged to take up arms 
in defence of Mohammed or his religion; it being the same oath that was 
afterwards exacted of the women, the form of which we have in the Korān,1 and 
is to this effect, viz.: "That they should renounce all idolatry; that they 
should not steal, nor commit fornication, nor kill their children (as the 
pagan Arabs used to do when they apprehended they should not be able to 
maintain them2), nor forge calumnies; and that they should obey the prophet in 
all things that were reasonable."  When they had solemnly engaged to do all 
this, Mohammed sent one of his disciples, named Masįb Ebn Omair, home with 
them, to instruct them more fully in the grounds and ceremonies of his new 
   Masįb, being arrived at Medina, by the assistance of those who had been 
formerly converted, gained several proselytes, particularly Osaid Ebn Hodeira, 
a chief man of the city, and Saad Ebn Moādh, prince of the tribe of Aws; 
Mohammedism spreading so fast, that there was scarce a house wherein there 
were not some who had embraced it.
   The next year, being the thirteenth of Mohammed's mission, Masįh returned 
to Mecca, accompanied by seventy-three men and two women of Medina, who had 
professed Islamism, besides some others who were as yet unbelievers.  On their 
arrival, they immediately sent to Mohammed, and offered him their assistance, 
of which he was now in great need, for his adversaries were by this time grown 
so powerful in Mecca, that he could not stay there much longer without 
imminent danger.  Wherefore he accepted their proposal, and met them one 
night, by appointment, at al Akaba above mentioned, attended by his uncle al 
Abbas, who, though he was not then a believer, wished his nephew well, and 
made a speech to those of Medina, wherein he told them, that as Mohammed was 
obliged to quit his native city, and seek an asylum elsewhere, and they had 
offered him their protection, they would do well not to deceive him; and that 
if they were not firmly resolved to defend and not betray him, they had better 
declare their minds, and let him provide for his safety in some other manner.  
Upon their protesting their sincerity, Mohammed swore to be faithful to them, 
on condition that they should protect him against all insults, as heartily as 
they would their own wives and families.  They then asked him what recompense 
they were to expect if they should happen to be killed in his quarrel; he 
answered, Paradise.  Whereupon they pledged their faith to him, and so 
returned home;3 after Mohammed had chosen twelve out of their number, who were 
to have the same authority among them as the twelve apostles of Christ had 
among his disciples.4
   Hitherto Mohammed had propagated his religion by fair means, so that the 
whole success of his enterprise, before his flight to Medina, must be 
attributed to persuasion only, and not to compulsion.  For before this second 
oath of fealty or inauguration at al Akaba, he had no permission to use any 
force at all; and in several places of the Korān, which he pretended were 
revealed during his stay at Mecca,

   1  Cap. 60.		2  Vide Kor. c. 6.		3  Abulfeda.  Vit. 
Moham. p. 40, &c.		4  Ebn Ishāk.

he declares his business was only to preach and admonish; that he had no 
authority to compel any person to embrace his religion; and that whether 
people believed, or not, was none of his concern, but belonged solely unto 
GOD.  And he was so far from allowing his followers to use force, that he 
exhorted them to bear patiently those injuries which were offered them on 
account of their faith; and when persecuted himself, chose rather to quit the 
place of his birth and retire to Medina, than to make any resistance.  But 
this great passiveness and moderation seems entirely owing to his want of 
power, and the great superiority of his opposers for the first twelve years of 
his mission; for no sooner was he enabled, by the assistance of those of 
Medina, to make head against his enemies, than he gave out, that GOD had 
allowed him and his followers to defend themselves against the infidels; and 
at length as his forces increased, he pretended to have the divine leave even 
to attack them, and to destroy idolatry, and set up the true faith by the 
sword; finding by experience that his designs would otherwise proceed very 
slowly, if they were not utterly overthrown, and knowing on the other hand 
that innovators, when they depend solely on their own strength, and can 
compel, seldom run any risk; from whence, the politician observes, it follows, 
that all the armed prophets have succeeded, and the unarmed ones have failed.  
Moses, Cyrus, Theseus, and Romulus would not have been able to establish the 
observance of their institutions for any length of time had they not been 
armed.1  The first passage of the Korān which gave Mohammed the permission of 
defending himself by arms, is said to have been that in the twenty-second 
chapter; after which a great number to the same purpose were revealed.
   That Mohammed had a right to take up arms for his own defence against his 
unjust persecutors, may perhaps be allowed; but whether he ought afterwards to 
have made use of that means for the establishing of his religion is a question 
I will not here determine.  How far the secular power may or ought to 
interpose in affairs of this nature, mankind are not agreed.  The method of 
converting by the sword, gives no very favourable idea of the faith which is 
so propagated, and is disallowed by everybody in those of another religion, 
though the same persons are willing to admit of it for the advancement of 
their own; supposing that though a false religion ought not to be established 
by authority, yet a true one may; and accordingly force is almost as 
constantly employed in these cases by those who have the power in their hands, 
as it is constantly complained of by those who suffer the violence.  It is 
certainly one of the most convincing proofs that Mohammedism was no other than 
human invention, that it owed its progress and establishment almost entirely 
to the sword; and it is one of the strongest demonstrations of the divine 
original of Christianity, that it prevailed against all the forces and powers 
of the world by the mere dint of its own truth, after having stood the 
assaults of all manner of persecutions, as well as other oppositions, for 300 
years together and at length made the Roman emperors themselves submit 
thereto;2 after which time, indeed, this proof seems to fail, Christianity 

 	  1  Machiavelli, Princ. c. 6.			2  See Prideaux's Letter 
to the Deists, p. 220, &c.

then established and Paganism abolished by public authority, which has had 
great influence in the propagation of the one and destruction of the other 
ever since.1  But to return.
   Mohammed having provided for the security of his companions as well as his 
own, by the league offensive and defensive which he had now concluded with 
those of Medina, directed them to repair thither, which they accordingly did; 
but himself with Abu Becr and Ali stayed behind, having not yet received the 
divine permission, as he pretended, to leave Mecca.  The Koreish, fearing the 
consequence of this new alliance, began to think it absolutely necessary to 
prevent Mohammed's escape to Medina, and having held a council thereon, after 
several milder expedients had been rejected, they came to a resolution that he 
should be killed; and agreed that a man should be chosen out of every tribe 
for the execution of this design, and that each man should have a blow at him 
with his sword, that the guilt of his blood might fall equally on all the 
tribes, to whose united power the Hashemites were much inferior, and therefore 
durst not attempt to revenge their kinsman's death.
   This conspiracy was scarce formed when by some means or other it came to 
Mohammed knowledge, and he gave out that it was revealed to him the angel 
Gabriel, who had now ordered him to retire to Medina.  Whereupon, to amuse his 
enemies, he directed Ali to lie down in his place and wrap himself up in his 
green cloak, which he did, and Mohammed escape miraculously, as they pretend,2 
to Abu Becr's house, unperceived by the conspirators, who had already 
assembled at the prophet's door.  They in the meantime, looking through the 
crevice and seeing Ali, whom they took to be Mohammed himself, asleep, 
continued watching there till morning, when Ali arose, and they found 
themselves deceived.
   From Abu Becr's house Mohammed and he went to a cave in Mount Thur, to the 
south-east of Mecca, accompanied only by Amer Ebn Foheirah, Abu Becr's 
servant, and Abd'allah Ebn Oreikat, an idolater, whom they had hired for a 
guide.  In this cave they lay hid three days to avoid the search of their 
enemies, which they very narrowly escaped, and not without the assistance of 
more miracles than one; for some say that the Koreish were struck with 
blindness, so that they could not find the cave; others, that after Mohammed 
and his companions were got in, two pigeons laid their eggs at the entrance, 
and a spider covered the mouth of the cave with her web,3 which made them look 
no farther.4  Abu Becr, seeing the prophet in such imminent danger, became 
very sorrowful, whereupon Mohammed comforted him with these words, recorded in 
the Korān:5 "Be not grieved, for GOD is with us."  Their enemies being 
retired, they left the cave and set out for Medina, by a by-road, and having 
fortunately, or as the Mohammedans tell us, miraculously, escaped some who 
were sent to pursue them,

   1  See Bayle's Dict. Hist. Art. Mahomet, Rem. O.		2  See the notes 
to chap. 8 and 36.			3  It is observable that the Jews have a 
like tradition concerning David, when he fled from Saul into the cave; and the 
Targum paraphrases these words of the second verse of Psalm lvii., which was 
composed on occasion of that deliverance: "I will pray before the most high 
GOD that performeth all things for me, in this manner; I will pray before the 
most high GOD, who called a spider to weave a web for my sake in the mouth of 
the cave."			4  Al Beidāwi in Kor. c. 9.  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. 
Orient p. 445.		5  Cap. 9. 

arrived safely at that city; whither Ali followed them in three days, after he 
had settled some affairs at Mecca.4
   The first thing Mohammed did after his arrival at Medina, was to build a 
temple for his religious worship, and a house for himself, which he did on a 
parcel of ground which had before served to put camels in, or as others tell 
us, for a burying-ground, and belonged to Sahal and Soheil the sons of Amru, 
who were orphans.5  This action Dr. Prideaux exclaims against, representing it 
as a flagrant instance of injustice, for that, says he, he violently 
dispossessed these poor orphans, the sons of an inferior artificer (whom the 
author he quotes6 calls a carpenter) of this ground, and so founded the first 
fabric of his worship with the like wickedness as he did his religion.7  But 
to say nothing of the improbability that Mohammed should act in so impolitic a 
manner at his first coming, the mohammedan writers set this affair ina quite 
different light; one tells us that he treated with the lads about the price of 
the ground, but they desired he would accept it asa present;8 however, as 
historians of good credit assure us, he actually bought it,9 and the money was 
paid by Abu Becr.1  Besides, had Mohammed accepted it as a present, the 
orphans were in circumstances sufficient to have afforded it; for they were of 
a very good family, of the tribe of Najjār, one of the most illustrious among 
the Arabs, and not the sons of a carpenter, as Dr. Prideaux's author writes, 
who took the word Najjār, which signifies a carpenter, for an appellative, 
whereas it is a proper name.2
   Mohammed being securely settled at Medina, and able not only to defend 
himself against the insults of his enemies, but to attack them, began to send 
out small parties to make reprisals on the Koreish; the first party consisting 
of no more than nine men, who intercepted and plundered a caravan belonging to 
that tribe, and in the action took two prisoners.  But what established his 
affairs very much, and was the foundation on which he built all his succeeding 
greatness, was the gaining of the battle of Bedr, which was fought in the 
second year of the Hejra, and is so famous in the Mohammedan history.3  As my 
design is not to write the life of Mohammed, but only to describe the manner 
in which he carried on his enterprise, I shall not enter into any detail of 
his subsequent battles and expeditions, which amounted to a considerable 
number.  Some reckon no less than twenty-seven expeditions wherein Mohammed 
was personally present, in nine of which he gave battle, besides several other 
expeditions in which he was not present:4 some of them, however, will be 
necessarily taken notice of in explaining several passages of the Korān.  His 
forces he maintained partly by the contributions of his followers for this 
purpose, which he called by the name of Zacāt or alms, and the paying of which 
he very artfully made one main article of his religion; and partly by ordering 
a fifth part of the plunder to be brought into the public treasury for that 
purpose, in which manner he likewise pretended to act by the divine direction.

   4  Abulfeda.  Vit. Moh. p. 50, &c.  Ebn Shohnah.		5  Abulfeda, ib. 
p. 52, 53.		6  Disputatio Christiani contra Saracen. c. 4.		
	7  Prideaux's Life of Mahomet, p. 58.			8  Al Bokhāri in 
9  Al Jannābi		1  Ahmed Ebn Yusef.		2  Vide Gagnier, not. in 
Abulfed. de Vit. Moh. p. 52, 53.
3  See the notes on the Korān, chap. 3.			4  Vide Abulfed. Vit. 
Moh. p. 158.

   In a few years by the success of his arms (notwithstanding he sometimes 
came off by the worst) he considerably raised his credit and power.  In the 
sixth year of the Hejra he set out with 1,400 men to visit the temple of 
Mecca, not with any intent of committing hostilities, but in a peaceable 
manner.  However, when he came to al Hodeibiya, which is situate partly within 
and partly without the sacred territory, the Koreish sent to let him know that 
they would not permit him to enter Mecca, unless he forced his way; whereupon 
he called his troops about him, and they all took a solemn oath of fealty or 
homage to him, and he resolved to attack the city; but those of Mecca sending 
Araw Ebn Masśd, prince of the tribe of Thakīf, as their ambassador to desire 
peace, a truce was concluded between them for ten years, by which any person 
was allowed to enter into league either with Mohammed or with the Koreish as 
he thought fit.
   It may not be improper, to show the inconceivable veneration and respect 
the Mohammedans by this time had for their prophet, to mention the account 
which the above-mentioned ambassador gave the Koreish, at his return, of their 
behaviour.  He said he had been at the courts both of the Roman emperor and of 
the king of Persia, and never saw any prince so highly respected by his 
subjects as Mohammed was by his companions; for whenever he made the ablution, 
in order to say his prayers, they ran and catched the water that he had used; 
and whenever he spit, they immediately licked it up, and gathered up every 
hair that fell from him with great superstition.1
   In the seventh year of the Hejra, Mohammed began to think of propagating 
his religion beyond the bounds of Arabia, and sent messengers to the 
neighbouring princes with letters to invite them to Mohammedism.  Nor was this 
project without some success.  Khosrū Parvīz, then king of Persia, received 
his letter with great disdain, and tore it in a passion, sending away the 
messenger very abruptly; which when Mohammed heard, he said, "GOD shall tear 
his kingdom."  And soon after a messenger came to Mohammed from Badhān, king 
of Yaman, who was a dependant on the Persians,2 to acquaint him that he had 
received orders to send him to Khosrū.  Mohammed put off his answer till the 
next morning, and then told the messenger it had been revealed to him that 
night that Khosrū was slain by his son Shirūyeh; adding that he was well 
assured his new religion and empire should rise to as great a height as that 
of Khosrū; and therefore bid him advise his master to embrace Mohammedism.  
The messenger being returned, Badhān in a few days received a letter from 
Shirūyeh informing him of his father's death, and ordering him to give the 
prophet no further disturbance.  Whereupon Badhān and the Persians with him 
turned Mohammedans.3
   The emperor Heraclius, as the Arabian historians assure us, received 
Mohammed's letter with great respect, laying it on his pillow, and dismissed 
the bearer honourably.  And some pretend that he would have professed this new 
faith, had he not been afraid of losing his crown.4
   Mohammed wrote to the same effect to the king of Ethiopia, though he had 
been converted before, according to the Arab writers; and to

   1  Abulfeda Vit. Moh. p. 85.		2  See before, p. 8.		3  
Abulfeda, Vit. Moh. p. 92, &c.	4  Al Jannābi.

Mokawkas, governor of Egypt, who gave the messenger a very favourable 
reception, and sent several valuable presents to Mohammed, and among the rest 
two girls, one of which, named Mary,1 became a great favourite with him.  He 
also sent letters of the like purport to several Arab princes, particularly 
one to al Hareth Ebn Abi Shamer,2 king of Ghassān, who, returning for answer 
that he would go to Mohammed himself, the prophet said, "May his kingdom 
perish;" another to Hawdha Ebn Ali, king of Yamāma, who was a Christian, and 
having some time before professed Islamism, had lately returned to his former 
faith; this prince sent back a very rough answer, upon which Mohammed cursing 
him, he died soon after; and a third to al Mondar Ebn Sāwa, king of Bahrein, 
who embraced Mohammedism, and all the Arabs of that country followed his 
   The eighth year of the Hejra was a very fortunate year to Mohammed.  In the 
beginning of it Khāled Ebn al Walīd and Amru Ebn al As, both excellent 
soldiers, the first of whom afterwards conquered Syria and other countries, 
and the latter Egypt, became proselytes of Mohammedism.  And soon after the 
prophet sent 3,000 men against the Grecian forces, to revenge the death of one 
of his ambassadors, who being sent to the governor of Bosra on the same errand 
as those who went to the above-mentioned princes, was slain by an Arab of the 
tribe of Ghassān at Mūta, a town in the territory of Balkā in Syria, about 
three days' journey eastward from Jerusalem, near which town they encountered.  
The Grecians being vastly superior in number (for, including the auxiliary 
Arabs, they had an army of 100,000 men), the Mohammedans were repulsed in the 
first attack, and lost successively three of their general, viz., Zeid Ebn 
Hāretha, Mohammed's freedman, Jaafar, the son of Abu Tāleb, and Abdāllah Ebn 
Rawāha; but Khāled Ebn al Walīd, succeeding to the command, overthrew the 
Greeks with a great slaughter, and brought away abundance of rich spoil;4 on 
occasion of which action Mohammed gave him the honourable title of Seif min 
soyūf Allah, One of the Swords of GOD.5
   In this year also Mohammed took the city of Mecca, the inhabitants whereof 
had broken the truce concluded on two years before.  For the tribe of Becr, 
who were confederates of the Koreish, attacking those of Khozāah, who were 
allies of Mohammed, killed several of them, being supported in the action by a 
party of the Koreish themselves.  The consequence of this violation was soon 
apprehended, and Abu Sofiān himself made a journey to Medina on purpose to 
heal the breach and renew the truce,6 but in vain, for Mohammed, glad of this 
opportunity, refused to see him; whereupon he applied to Abu Becr and Ali, but 
they giving him no answer, he was obliged to return to Mecca as he came.
   Mohammed immediately gave orders for preparations to be made, that he might 
surprise the Meccans while they were unprovided to receive him; in a little 
time he began his march thither, and by the

   1  It is, however, a different name from that of the Virgin Mary, which the 
Orientals always write Maryam, or Miriam-whereas this is written Māriya.	
	2  This prince is omitted in Dr. Pocock's list of the kings of Ghassān, 
Spec. p. 77.
3  Abulfeda, bui sup. p. 94, &c.		4  Idem ib. p. 99, 100, &c.	
	5  Al Bokhāri in Sonna.
6  This circumstance is a plain proof that the Koreish had actually broken the 
truce, and that it was not a mere pretence of Mohammed's as Dr. Prideaux 
insinuates.  Life of Mahomet, p. 94.

time he came near the city his forces were increased to 10,000 men.  Those of 
Mecca being not in a condition to defend themselves against so formidable an 
army, surrendered at discretion, and Abu Sofiān saved his life by turning 
Mohammedan.  About twenty-eight of the idolaters were killed by a party under 
the command of Khāled; but this happened contrary to Mohammed's orders, who, 
when he entered the town, pardoned all the Koreish on their submission, except 
only six men and four women, who were more obnoxious than ordinary (some of 
them having apostatized), and were solemnly proscribed by the prophet himself; 
but of these no more than three men and one woman were put to death, the rest 
obtaining pardon on their embracing Mohammedism, and one of the women making 
her escape.1
   The remainder of this year Mohammed employed in destroying the idols in and 
round about Mecca, sending several of his generals on expeditions for that 
purpose, and to invite the Arabs to Islamism: wherein it is no wonder if they 
now met with success.
   The next year, being the ninth of the Hejra, the Mohammedans call "the year 
of embassies," for the Arabs had been hitherto expecting the issue of the war 
between Mohammed and the Koreish; but so soon as that tribe-the principal of 
the whole nation, and the genuine descendants of Ismael, whose prerogatives 
none offered to dispute-had submitted, they were satisfied that it was not in 
their power to oppose Mohammed, and therefore began to come in to him in great 
numbers, and to send embassies to make their submissions to him, both to 
Mecca, while he stayed there, and also to Medina, whither he returned this 
year.2  Among the rest, five kings of the tribe of Hamyar professed 
Mohammedism, and sent ambassadors to notify the same.3
   In the tenth year Ali was sent into Yaman to propagate the Mohammedan faith 
there, and as it is said, converted the whole tribe of Hamdān in one day.  
Their example was quickly followed by all the inhabitants of that province, 
except only those of Najrān, who, being Christians, chose rather to pay 
   Thus was Mohammedism established and idolatry rooted out, even in 
Mohammed's lifetime (for he died the next year), throughout all Arabia, except 
only Yamāma, where Moseilama, who set up also for a prophet as Mohammed's 
competitor, had a great party, and was not reduced till the Khalīfat of Abu 
Becr.  And the Arabs being then united in one faith and under one prince, 
found themselves in a condition of making those conquests which extended the 
Mohammedan faith over so great a part of the world.


   1  Vide Abulfed. ubi sup. c. 51, 52.				2  Vide Gagnier, 
not. ad Abulfed. p. 121.
3  Abulfed. ubi sup. p. 128.				4  Ibid. p. 129.



THE word Korān, derived from the verb karaa, to read, signifies properly in 
Arabic, "the reading," or rather, "that which ought to be read;" by which name 
Mohammedans denote not only the entire book or volume of the Korān, but also 
any particular chapter or section of it: just as the Jews call either the 
whole scripture or any part of it by the name of Karāh, or Mikra,1 words of 
the same origin and import; which observation seems to overthrow the opinion 
of some learned Arabians, who would have the Korān so named because it is a 
collection of the loose chapters or sheets which compose it-the verb karaa 
signifying also to gather or collect:2 and may also, by the way, serve as an 
answer to those who object3 that the Korān must be a book forged at once, and 
could not possibly be revealed by parcels at different times during the course 
of several years, as the Mohammedans affirm, because the Korān is often 
mentioned and called by that name in the very book  itself.  It may not be 
amiss to observe, that the syllable Al in the word Alkoran is only the Arabic 
article, signifying the, and therefore ought to be omitted when the English 
article is prefixed.
   Beside this peculiar name, the Korān is also honoured with several 
appellations, common to other books of scripture: as, al Forkān, from the verb 
faraka, to divide or distinguish; not, as the Mohammedan doctor say, because 
those books are divided into chapters or sections, or distinguish between good 
and evil; but in the same notion that the Jews use the word Perek, or Pirka, 
from the same root, to denote a section or portion of scripture.4  It is also 
called al Moshaf, the volume, and al Kitab, the book, by way of eminence, 
which answers to the Biblia of the Greeks; and al Dhikr, the admonition, which 
name is also given to the Pentateuch and Gospel.
   The Korān is divided into 114 larger portions of very unequal length, which 
we call chapters, but the Arabians Sowar, in the singular Sūra, a word rarely 
used on any other occasion, and properly signifying a row, order, or regular 
series; as a course of bricks in building, or a rank of soldiers in an army; 
and is the same in use and import with the Sūra, or Tora, of the jews, who 
also call the fifty-three sections of the Pentateuch Sedārim, a word of the 
same signification.5
   These chapters are not in the manuscript copies distinguished by their 
numerical order, though for the reader's ease they are numbered

   1  This name was at first given to the Pentateuch only, Nehem. viii.  Vide 
Simon. hist. Crit. du Vieux Test. l. r, c. 9.	2  Vide Erpen. not. ad Hist. 
Joseph. p. 3.		3  Marracc. de Alcor. p. 41.		4  Vide Gol. in 
append. ad Gram. Arab. Erpen. 175.  A chapter or subdivision of the Massictoth 
of the Mishna is also called Perek.  Maimon. pręf. in Seder Zeraim, p. 57.
5  Vide Gol. ubi sup. 177.  Each of the six grand divisions of the Mishna is 
also called Seder.  Maimon. ubi sup. p. 55.

in this edition, but by particular titles, which (except that of the first, 
which is the initial chapter, or introduction to the rest, and by the one 
Latin translator not numbered among the chapters) are taken sometimes from a 
particular matter of, or person mentioned therein; but usually from the first 
word of note, exactly in the same manner as the Jews have named their Sedārim: 
though the words from which some chapters are denominated be very far distant, 
towards the middle, or perhaps the end of the chapter; which seems ridiculous.  
But the occasion of this seems to have been, that the verse or passage wherein 
such word occurs, was, in point of time, revealed and committed to writing 
before the other verses of the same chapter which precede it in order: and the 
title being given to the chapter before it was completed, or the passages 
reduced to their present order, the verse from whence such title was taken did 
not always happen to begin the chapter.  Some chapters have two or more 
titles, occasioned by the difference of the copies.
   Some of the chapters having been revealed at Mecca, and others at Medina, 
the noting this difference makes a part of the title; but the reader will 
observe that several of the chapters are said to have been revealed partly at 
Mecca, and partly at Medina; and as to others, it is yet a dispute among the 
commentators to which place of the two they belong.
   Every chapter is subdivided into smaller portions, of very unequal length 
also, which we customarily call verses; but the Arabic word is Ayāt, the same 
with the Hebrew Ototh, and signifies signs, or wonders; such as are the 
secrets of GOD, his attributes, works, judgments, and ordinances, delivered in 
those verses; many of which have their particular titles also, imposed in the 
same manner as those of the chapters.
   Notwithstanding this subdivision is common and well known, yet I have never 
yet seen any manuscript wherein the verses in each chapter is set down after 
the title, which we have therefore added in the table of the chapters.  And 
the Mohammedans seem to have some scruple in making an actual distinction in 
their copies, because the chief disagreement between their several editions of 
the Korān, consists in the division and number of the verses: and for this 
reason I have not taken upon me to make any such division.
   Having mentioned the different editions of the Korān, it may not be amiss 
here to acquaint the reader, that there are seven principal editions, if I may 
so call them, or ancient copies of that book; two of which were published and 
used at Medina, a third at Mecca, a fourth at Cufa, a fifth at Basra, a sixth 
in Syria, and a seventh called the common or vulgar edition.  Of these 
editions, the first of Medina makes the whole number of the verses 6,000; the 
second and fifth, 6,214; the third, 6,219; the fourth, 6,236; the sixth, 
6,226; and the last, 6,225.  But they are all said to contain the same number 
of words, namely, 77,639;1 and the same number of letters, viz., 323,015:2 for 
the Mohammedans have in this also imitated the Jews, that they have 
superstitiously numbered the very words and letters of their law; nay, they 

   1  Or as others reckon them, 99, 464.  Reland. de Rel. Moh. p. 25.	
	2  Or according to another computation, 330,113.  Ibid.  Vide Gol. ubi 
sup. p. 178.  D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient. p. 87.

taken the pains to compute (how exactly I know not) the number of times each 
particular letter of the alphabet is contained in the Korān.1
   Besides these unequal divisions of chapter and verse, the Mohammedans have 
also divided their Korān into sixty equal portions, which they call Ahzāb, in 
the singular Hizb, each subdivided into four equal parts; which is also an 
imitation of the Jews, who have an ancient division of their Mishna into sixty 
portions, called Massictoth:2 but the Korān is more usually divided into 
thirty sections only, named Ajzā, from the singular Joz, each of twice the 
length of the former, and in the like manner subdivided into four parts.  
These divisions are for the use of the readers of the Korān in the royal 
temples, or in the adjoining chapels where the emperors and great men are 
interred.  There are thirty of these readers belonging to every chapel, and 
each reads his section every day, so that the whole Korān is read over once a 
day.3  I have seen several copies divided in this manner, and bound up in as 
many volumes; and have thought it proper to mark these divisions in the margin 
of this translation by numeral letters.
   Next after the title, at the head of every chapter, except only the ninth, 
is prefixed the following solemn form, by the Mohammedans called the 
Bismillah, "In the name of the most merciful GOD;" which form they constantly 
place at the beginning of all their books and writings in general, as a 
peculiar mark or distinguishing characteristic of their religion, it being 
counted a sort of impiety to omit it.  The Jews for the same purpose make use 
of the form, "In the name of the LORD," or, "In the name of the great GOD:" 
and the eastern Christians, that of "In the name of the Father, and of the 
Son, and of the Holy Ghost."  But I am apt to believe Mohammed really took 
this form, as he did many other things, from the Persian Magi, who used to 
begin their books in these words, Benām Yezdān bakhshaļshgher dādār; that is, 
"In the name of the most merciful, just GOD."4
   This auspicatory form, and also the titles of the chapters, are by the 
generality of the doctors and commentators believed to be of divine original, 
no less than the text itself; but the more moderate are of opinion they are 
only human additions, and not the very word of GOD.
   There are twenty-nine chapters of the Korān, which have this peculiarity, 
that they begin with certain letters of the alphabet, some with a single one, 
others with more.  These letters the Mohammedans believe to be the peculiar 
marks of the Korān, and to conceal several profound mysteries, the certain 
understanding of which, the more intelligent confess, has not been 
communicated to any mortal, their prophet only excepted.  Notwithstanding 
which, some will take the liberty of guessing at their meaning by that species 
of Cabbala called by the jews, Notarikon,1 and suppose the letters to stand 
for as many words expressing the names and attributes of GOD, his works, 
ordinances, and decrees; and therefore these mysterious letters, as well as 
the verses themselves, seem in the Korān to be called signs.  Others explain 
the intent of these letters from their nature or organ, or else from their 
value in numbers, according to another species of the Jewish Cabbala

   1  Vide Reland. de Relig. oh. p. 25.			2  Vide Gol. ubi sup. p. 
178.  Maimon. pręf. in Seder Zeraim, p. 57.
3  Vide Smith, de Moribus et Instit. Turcar. p. 58.		4  Hyde, His. Rel. 
Vet. Pers. p. 14.		1  Vide Buxtorf. Lexicon Rabbin.

called Gematria;2 the uncertainty of which conjectures sufficiently appears 
from their disagreement.  Thus, for example, five chapters, one of which is 
the second, begin with these letters, A.L.M., which some imagine to stand for 
Allah latīf magīd; "GOD is gracious and to be glorified;" or, Ana li minni, 
"to me and from me," viz., belongs all perfection, and proceeds all good; or 
else for Ana Allah ālam, "I am the most wise GOD," taking the first letter to 
mark the beginning of the first word, the second the middle of the second 
word, and the third the last of the third word: or for "Allah, Gabriel, 
Mohammed," the author, revealer, and preacher of the Korān.  Others say that 
as the letter A belongs to the lower part of the throat, the first of the 
organs of speech; L to the palate, the middle organ; and M to the lips, which 
are the last organs; so these letters signify that GOD is the beginning, 
middle, and end, or ought to be praised in the beginning, middle, and end of 
all our words and actions: or, as the total value of those three letters in 
numbers is seventy-one, they signify that in the space of so many years, the 
religion preached in the Korān should be fully established.  The conjecture of 
a learned Christian3 is, at least, as certain as any of the former, who 
supposes those letters were set there by the amanuensis, for Amar li Mohammed, 
i.e., "at the command of Mohammed," as the five letters prefixed to the 
nineteenth chapter seem to be there written by a Jewish scribe, for Cob yaas, 
i.e., "thus he commanded."
   The Korān is universally allowed to be written with the utmost elegance and 
purity of language, in the dialect of the tribe of Koreish, the most noble and 
polite of all the Arabians, but with some mixture, though very rarely, or 
other dialects.  It is confessedly the standard of the Arabic tongue, and as 
the more orthodox believe, and are taught by the book itself, inimitable by 
any human pen (though some sectaries have been of another opinion),1 and 
therefore insisted on as a permanent miracle, greater than that of raising the 
dead,2 and alone sufficient to convince the world of its divine original.
   And to this miracle did Mohammed himself chiefly appeal for the 
confirmation of his mission, publicly challenging the most eloquent men in 
Arabia, which was at that time stocked with thousands whose sole study and 
ambition it was to excel in elegance of style and composition,3 to produce 
even a single chapter that might be compared with it.4  I will mention but one 
instance out of several, to show that this book was really admired for the 
beauty of its composure by those who must be allowed to have been competent 
judges.  A poem of Labīd Ebn Rabīa, one of the greatest wits in Arabia in 
Mohammed's time, being fixed up on the gate of the temple of Mecca, an honour 
allowed to none but the most esteemed performances, none of the other poets 
durst offer anything of their own in competition with it.  But the second 
chapter of the Korān being fixed up by it soon after, Labīd

   2  Vide Ibid.  See also Schickardi Bechinat happerushim, p. 62, &c.	
	3  Golius in append. ad Gram. Erp. p. 182.
1  See after.		2  Ahmed Abd'alhalim, apud Marracc. de Alc. p. 43.	
		3  A noble writer therefore mistakes the question when he says 
these eastern religionists leave their sacred writ the sole standard of 
literate performance by extinguishing all true learning.  For though they were 
destitute of what we call learning, yet they were far from being ignorant, or 
unable to compose elegantly in their own tongue.  See L. Shaftesbury's 
Characteristics, vol. iii. p. 235.		4  Al Ghazāli, apud Poc. Spec. 191.  
See Kor. c. 17, and also c. 2, p. 3, and c. II, &c.

himself (then an idolater) on reading the first verses only, was struck with 
admiration, and immediately professed the religion taught thereby, declaring 
that such words could proceed from an inspired person only.  This Labīd was 
afterwards of great service to Mohammed, in writing answers to the satires and 
invectives that were made on him and his religion by the infidels, and 
particularly by Amri al Kais,5 prince of the tribe of Asad,6 and author of one 
of those seven famous poems called al Moallakāt.7
   The style of the Korān is generally beautiful and fluent, especially where 
it imitates the prophetic manner and scripture phrases.  It is concise and 
often obscure, adorned with bold figures after the eastern taste, enlivened 
with florid and sententious expressions, and in many places, especially where 
the majesty and attributes of GOD are described, sublime and magnificent; of 
which the reader cannot but observe several instances, though he must not 
imagine the translation comes up to the original, notwithstanding my 
endeavours to do it justice.
   Though it be written in prose, yet the sentences generally conclude in a 
long continued rhyme, for the sake of which the sense is often interrupted, 
and unnecessary repetitions too frequently made, which appear still more 
ridiculous in a translation, where the ornament, such as it is, for whose sake 
they were made, cannot be perceived.  However, the Arabians are so mightily 
delighted with this jingling, that they employ it in their most elaborate 
compositions, which they also embellish with frequent passages of, and 
allusions to, the Korān, so that it is next to impossible to understand them 
without being well versed in this book.
   It is probable the harmony of expression which the Arabians find in the 
Korān might contribute not a little to make them relish the doctrine therein 
taught, and give an efficacy to arguments which, had they been nakedly 
proposed without this rhetorical dress, might not have so easily prevailed.  
Very extraordinary effects are related of the power of words well chosen and 
artfully placed, which are no less powerful either to ravish or amaze than 
music itself; wherefore as much has been ascribed by the best orators to this 
part of rhetoric as to any other.1  He must have a very bad ear who is not 
uncommonly moved with the very cadence of a well-turned sentence; and Mohammed 
seems not to have been ignorant of the enthusiastic operation of rhetoric on 
the minds of men; for which reason he has not only employed his utmost skill 
in these his pretended revelations, to preserve the dignity and sublimity of 
style, which might seem not unworthy of the majesty of that Being, whom he 
gave out to be the author of them; and to imitate the prophetic manner of the 
Old Testament; but he has not neglected even the other arts of oratory; 
wherein he succeeded so well, and so strangely captivated the minds of his 
audience, that several of his opponents thought it the effect of witchcraft 
and enchantment, as he sometimes complains.2
   "The general design of the Korān" (to use the words of a very learned 
person) "seems to be this.  To unite the professors of the

   5  D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 512, &c.		6  Poc. Spec. p. 80.	
	7  See before, p. 22.		1  See Casaubon, of Enthusiasm, c. 4.	
	2  Kor. c. 15, 21, &c.

three different religions then followed in the populous country of Arabia, who 
for the most part lived promiscuously, and wandered without guides, the far 
greater number being idolaters, and the rest Jews and Christians, mostly of 
erroneous and heterodox belief, in the knowledge and worship of one eternal, 
invisible GOD, by whose power all things were made, and those which are not, 
may be, the supreme Governor, Judge, and absolute Lord of the creation; 
established under the sanction of certain laws, and the outward signs of 
certain ceremonies, partly of ancient and partly of novel institution, and 
enforced by setting before them rewards and punishments, both temporal and 
eternal; and to bring them all to the obedience of Mohammed, as the prophet 
and ambassador of GOD, who after the repeated admonitions, promises, and 
threats of former ages, was at last to establish and propagate GOD'S religion 
on earth by force of arms, and to be acknowledged chief pontiff in spiritual 
matters, as well as supreme prince in temporal."1
   The great doctrine then of the Korān is the unity of GOD; to restore which 
point Mohammed pretended was the chief end of his mission; it being laid down 
by him as a fundamental truth, that there never was nor ever can be more than 
one true orthodox religion.  For though the particular laws or ceremonies are 
only temporary, and subject to alteration according to the divine direction, 
yet the substance of it being eternal truth, is not liable to change, but 
continues immutably the same.  And he taught that whenever this religion 
became neglected, or corrupted in essentials, GOD had the goodness to re-
inform and re-admonish mankind thereof, by several prophets, of whom Moses and 
Jesus were the most distinguished, till the appearance of Mohammed, who is 
their seal, no other being to be expected after him.  And the more effectually 
to engage people hearken to him, great part of the Korān is employed in 
relating examples of dreadful punishments formerly inflicted by God on those 
who rejected and abused his messengers; several of which stories of some 
circumstances of them are taken from the Old and New Testament, but many more 
from the apocryphal books and traditions of the Jews and Christians of those 
ages, set up in the Korān as truths in opposition to the scriptures, which the 
Jews and Christians are charged with having altered; and I am apt to believe 
that few or none of the relations or circumstances in the Korān were invented 
by Mohammed, as is generally supposed, it being easy to trace the greater part 
of them much higher, as the rest might be, were more of the books extant, and 
it was worth while to make the inquiry.
   The other part of the Korān is taken up in giving necessary laws and 
directions, in frequent admonitions to moral and divine virtues, and above all 
to the worshipping and reverencing of the only true GOD, and resignation to 
his will; among which are many excellent things intermixed not unworthy even a 
Christian's perusal.
   But besides these, there are a great number of passages which are 
occasional, and relate to particular emergencies.  For whenever anything 
happened which perplexed and gravelled Mohammed, and

1  Golius. in appen. ad Gram. Erp. p. 176.

which he could not otherwise get over, he had constant recourse to a new 
revelation, as an infallible expedient in all nice cases; and he found the 
success of this method answer his expectation.  It was certainly an admirable 
and politic contrivance of his to bring down the whole Korān at once to the 
lowest heaven only, and not to the earth, as a bungling prophet would probably 
have done; for if the whole had been published at once, innumerable objections 
might have been made, which it would have been very hard, if not impossible, 
for him to solve: but as he pretended to have received it by parcels, as GOD 
saw proper that they should be published for the conversion and instruction of 
the people, he had a sure way to answer all emergencies, and to extricate 
himself with honour from any difficulty which might occur.  If any objection 
be hence made to that eternity of the Korān, which the Mohammedans are taught 
to believe, they easily answer it by their doctrine of absolute 
predestination; according to which all the accidents for the sake of which 
these occasional passages were revealed, were predetermined by GOD from all 
   That Mohammed was really the author and chief contriver of the Korān is 
beyond dispute; though it be highly probably that he had no small assistance 
in his design from others, as his countrymen failed not to object to him;1 
however, they differed so much in their conjectures as to the particular 
persons who gave him such assistance,2 that they were not able, it seems, to 
prove the charge; Mohammed, it is to be presumed, having taken his measures 
too well to be discovered.  Dr. Prideaux3 has given the most probably account 
of this matter, though chiefly from Christian writers, who generally mix such 
ridiculous fables with what they deliver, that they deserve not much credit.
   However, it be, the Mohammedans absolutely deny the Korān was composed by 
their prophet himself, or any other for him; it being their general and 
orthodox belief that it is of divine original, any, that it is eternal and 
uncreated, remaining, as some express it, in the very essence of GOD; that the 
first transcript has been from everlasting by GOD'S throne, written on a 
tablet of vast bigness, called the preserved table, in which are also recorded 
the divine decrees past and future: that a copy from this table, in one volume 
on paper, was by the ministry of the angel Gabriel sent down to the lowest 
heaven, in the month of Ramadān, on the night of power;4 from whence Gabriel 
revealed it to Mohammed by parcels, some at Mecca, and some at Medina, at 
different times, during the space of twenty-three years, as the exigency of 
affairs required; giving him, however, the consolation to show him the whole 
(which they tell us was bound in silk, and adorned with gold and precious 
stones of paradise) once a year; but in the last year of his life he had the 
favour to see it twice.  They say that few chapters were delivered entire, the 
most part being revealed piecemeal, and written down form time to time by the 
prophet's amanuenses in such or such a part of such or such a chapter till 
they were completed, according to the directions of the angel.1  The first 
parcel that was

   1  Vide Kor. c. 16, and c. 25.		2  See the notes on those passages.	
	3  Life of Mahomet, p. 31, &c.	
4  Vide Kor. c. 97, and note ibid.		1  Therefore it is a mistake of Dr. 
Prideaux to say it was brought him chapter by chapter.  Life of Mahomet, p. 6.  
The Jews also say the Law was given to Moses by parcels.  Vide Millium, de 
Mohammedismo ante Moham. p. 365.

revealed, is generally agreed to have ben the first five verses of the ninety-
sixth chapter.2
   After the new revealed passages had been from the prophet's mouth taken 
down in writing by his scribe, they were published to his followers, several 
of whom took copies for their private use, but the far greater number got them 
by heart.  The originals when returned were put promiscuously into a chest, 
observing no order of time, for which reason it is uncertain when many 
passages were revealed.
   When Mohammed died, he left his revelations in the same disorder I have 
mentioned, and not digest into the method, such as it is, which we now find 
them in.  This was the work of his successor, Abu Becr, who considering that a 
great number of passages were committed to the memory of Mohammed's followers, 
many of whom were slain in their wars, ordered the whole to be collected, not 
only from the palm-leaves and skins on which they had been written, and which 
were kept between two boards or covers, but also from the mouths of such as 
had gotten them by heart.  And this transcript when completed he committed to 
the custody of Hafsa the daughter of Omar, one of the prophet's widows.3
   From this relation it is generally imagined that Abu Becr was really the 
compiler of the Korān; though for aught appears to the contrary, Mohammed left 
the chapters complete as we now have them, excepting such passages as his 
successor might add or correct from those who had gotten them by heart; what 
Abu Becr did else being perhaps no more than to range the chapters in their 
present order, which he seems to have done without any regard to time, having 
generally placed the longest first.
   However, in the thirtieth year of the Hejra, Othmān being then Khalīf, and 
observing the great disagreement in the copies of the Korān in the several 
provinces of the empire-those of Irak, for example, following the reading of 
Abu Musa al Ashari, and the Syrians that of Macdād Ebn Aswad-he, by advice of 
the companions, ordered a great number of copies to be transcribed from that 
of Abu Becr, in Hafsa's care, under the inspection of Zeid Ebn Thabet, 
Abd'allah Ebn Zobair, Saļd Ebn al As, and Abd'alrahmān Ebn al Hāreth, the 
Makhzumite; whom he directed that wherever they disagreed about any word, they 
should write it in the dialect of the Koreish, in which it was first 
delivered.1  These copies when made were dispersed in the several provinces of 
the empire, and the old ones burnt and suppressed.  Though many things in 
Hafsa's copy were corrected by the above-mentioned supervisors, yet some 
various readings still occur; the most material of which will be taken notice 
of in their proper places.
   The want of vowels2 in the Arabic character made Mokrīs, or readers whose 
peculiar study and profession it was to read the Korān with its proper vowels, 
absolutely necessary.  But these differing in their

   2  Not the whole chapter, as Golius says.  Append. ad Gr. Erp. p. 180.	
	3  Elmacin. in Vita Abu Becr.  Abulfeda.	
1  Abulfeda, in Vitis Abubecr and Othmān.		2  The characters or marks of 
the Arabic vowels were not used till several years after Mohammed.  Some 
ascribe the invention of them to Yahya Ebn Yāmer, some to Nasr Ebn Asam, 
surnamed al Leithi, and others to Abu'laswad al Dīli-all three of whom were 
doctors of Basra, and immediately succeeded the companions.  See D'Herbel. 
Bibl. Orient. p. 87.

manner of reading, occasioned still further variations in the copies of the 
Korān, as they are now written with the vowels; and herein consist much the 
greater part of the various readings throughout the book.  The readers whose 
authority the commentators chiefly allege, in admitting these various 
readings, are seven in number.
   There being some passages in the Korān which are contradictory, the 
Mohammedan doctors obviate any objection from thence by the doctrine of 
abrogation; for they say, that GOD in the Korān commanded several things which 
were for good reasons afterwards revoked and abrogated.
   Passages abrogated are distinguished into three kinds: the first where the 
letter and the sense are both abrogated; the second, where the letter only is 
abrogated, but the sense remains; and the third, where the sense is abrogated, 
though the letter remains.
   Of the first kind were several verses, which, by the tradition of Malec Ebn 
Ans, were in the prophet's lifetime read in the chapter of Repentance, but are 
not now extant, one of which, being all he remembered of them, was the 
following: "If a son of Adam had two rivers of gold, he would covet yet a 
third; and if he had three, he would covet yet a fourth (to be added) unto 
them; neither shall the belly of a son of Adam be filled, but with dust.  GOD 
will turn unto him who shall repent."  Another instance of this kind we have 
from the tradition of Abd'allah Ebn Masūd, who reported that the prophet gave 
him a verse to read which he wrote down; but the next morning looking in his 
book, he found it was vanished, and the leaf blank: this he acquainted 
Mohammed with, who assured him the verse was revoked the same night.
   Of the second kind is a verse called the verse of stoning, which, according 
to the tradition of Omar, afterwards Khalīf, was extant while Mohammed was 
living, though it be not now to be found.  The words are these: "Abhor not 
your parents, for this would be ingratitude in you.  If a man and woman of 
reputation commit adultery, ye shall stone them both; it is a punishment 
ordained by GOD; for GOD is mighty and wise."
   Of the last kind are observed several verses in sixty-three different 
chapters, to the number of 225.  Such as the precepts of turning in prayer to 
Jerusalem; fasting after the old custom; forbearance towards idolaters; 
avoiding the ignorant, and the like.1  The passages of this sort have been 
carefully collected by several writers, and are most of them remarked in their 
proper places.
   Though it is the belief of the Sonnites or orthodox that the Korān is 
uncreated and eternal, subsisting in the very essence of GOD, and Mohammed 
himself is said to have pronounced him an infidel who asserted the contrary,2 
yet several have been of a different opinion; particularly the sect of the 
Mótazalites,3 and the followers of Isa Ebn Sobeih Abu Musa, surnamed al 
Mozdār, who struck not to accuse those who held the Korān to be uncreated of 
infidelity, as asserters of two eternal beings.4
   This point was controverted with so much heat that it occasioned

   1  Abu Hashem Hebatallah, apud Marracc. de Alc. p. 42.		2  Apud Poc. 
Spec. 220.		3  See after, in Sect. VIII.		4  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 
219, &c.

many calamities under some of the Khalīfs of the family of Abbās, al Mamūn5 
making a public edict declaring the Korān to be created, which was confirmed 
by his successors Al Mótasem6 and Al Wāthek,7 who whipped, imprisoned, and put 
to death those of the contrary opinion.  But at length Al Motawakkel,1 who 
succeeded Al Wāthek, put an end to these persecutions, by revoking the former 
edicts, releasing those that were imprisoned on that account, and leaving 
every man at liberty as to his belief in this point.2
   Al Ghazāli seems to have tolerably reconciled both opinions, saying, that 
the Korān is read and pronounced with the tongue, written in books, and kept 
in memory; and is yet eternal, subsisting in GOD'S essence, and not possible 
to be separated thence by any transmission into men's memories or the leaves 
of books;3 by which he seems to mean no more than that the original idea of 
the Korān only is really in GOD, and consequently co-essential and co-eternal 
with him, but that the copies are created and the work of man.
   The opinion of Al Jahedh, chief of a sect bearing his name, touching the 
Korān, is too remarkable to be omitted: he used to say it was a body, which 
might sometimes be turned into a man,4 and sometimes into a beast;5 which 
seems to agree with the notion of those who assert the Korān to have two 
faces, one of a man, the other of a beast;6 thereby, as I conceive, intimating 
the double interpretation it will admit of, according to the letter or the 
   As some have held the Korān to be created, so there have not been wanting 
those who have asserted that there is nothing miraculous in that book in 
respect to style or composition, excepting only the prophetical relations of 
things past, and predictions of things to come; and that had GOD left men to 
their natural liberty, and not restrained them in that particular, the 
Arabians could have composed something not only equal, but superior to the 
Korān in eloquence, method, and purity of language.  This was another opinion 
of the Mótazalites, and in particular of al Mozdār, above mentioned, and al 
   The Korān being the Mohammedans' rule of faith and practice, it is no 
wonder its expositors and commentators are so very numerous.  And it may not 
be amiss to take notice of the rules they observe in expounding it.
   One of the most learned commentators1 distinguishes the contents of the 
Korān into allegorical and literal.  The former comprehends the more obscure, 
parabolical, and enigmatical passages, and such as

   5  Anno Hej. 218.  Abulfarag, p. 245, v. etiam Elmacin. in Vita al Mamūn.	
	6  In the time of al Mótasem, a doctor named Abu Harūn Ebn al Baca found 
out a distinction to screen himself, by affirming that the Korān was ordained, 
because it is said in that book, "And I have ordained thee the Korān."  He 
went still farther to allow that what was ordained was created, and yet he 
denied it thence followed that the Korān was created.  Abulfarag, p. 253.	
	7  Ibid. p. 257.		1  Anno Hej. 242.		2  Abulfarag, p. 262.
	3  Al Ghazāli, in prof. fid.		4  The Khalīf al Walīd Ebn Yazīd, 
who was the eleventh of the race of Emmeya, and is looked on by the 
Mohammedans as a reprobate, and one of no religion, seems to have treated this 
book as a rational creature; for, dipping into it one day, the first words he 
met with were these: "Every rebellious perverse person shall not prosper."  
Whereupon he stuck it on a lance, and shot it to pieces with arrows, repeating 
these verses: "Dost thou rebuke every rebellious perverse person?  Behold, I 
am that rebellious, perverse person.  When thou appearest before thy LORD on 
the day of resurrection, say, O LORD, al Walīd has torn me thus."  Ebn 
Shohnah. v. Poc. Spec. p. 223.
5  Poc. Spec. p. 222.		6  Herbelot, p. 87.		7  Abulfeda, 
Shahrestani, &c. apud Poc. Spec. p. 222, et Marracc. de Kor. p. 44.	
	1  Al Kamakhshari.  Vide Kor. c. 3. 

are repealed or abrogated; the latter those which are plain, perspicuous, 
liable to no doubt, and in full force.
   To explain these severally in a right manner, it is necessary from 
tradition and study to know the time when each passage was revealed, its 
circumstances, state, and history, and the reasons or particular emergencies 
for the sake of which it was revealed.2  Or, more explicitly, whether the 
passage was revealed at Mecca, or at Medina; whether it be abrogated, or does 
itself abrogate any other passage; whether it be anticipated in order of time, 
or postponed; whether it be distinct from the context, or depends thereon; 
whether it be particular or general; and, lastly, whether it be implicit by 
intention, or explicit in words.3
   By what has been said the reader may easily believe this book is in the 
greatest reverence and esteem among the Mohammedans.  They dare not so much as 
touch it without being first washed or legally purified;4 which, lest they 
should do by inadvertence, they write these words on the cover or label, "Let 
none touch it but they who are clean."  They read it with great care and 
respect, never holding it below their girdles.  They swear by it, consult it 
in their weighty occasions,5 carry it with them to war, write sentences of it 
on their banners, adorn it with gold and precious stones, and knowingly suffer 
it not to be in the possession of any of a different persuasion.
   The Mohammedans, far from thinking the Korān to be profaned by a 
translation, as some authors have written,6 have taken care to have their 
scriptures translated not only into the Persian tongue, but into several 
others, particularly the Javan and Malayan,7 though out of respect to the 
original Arabic, these versions are generally (if not always) intermediary.




IT has been already observed more than once, that the fundamental position on 
which Mohammed erected the superstructure of his religion was, that from the 
beginning to the end of the world there has been, and for ever will be, but 
one true orthodox belief; consisting, as to matter of faith, in the 
acknowledging of the only true GOD, and the believing in and obeying such 
messengers or prophets as he should from time to time send, with proper 
credential, to reveal his will to 

   2  Ahmed Ebn Moh. al Thalebi, in Princip. Expos. Alc.		3  Yahya Ebn 
al Salām al Basri, in Princep. Expos. Alc.
4  The Jews have the same veneration for their law; not daring to touch it 
with unwashed hands, nor then neither without a cover.  Vide Millium, de 
Mohammedismo ante Moh. p. 366.		5  This they do by dipping into it, 
and taking an omen from the words which they first light on: which practise 
they also learned of the Jews, who do the same with the scriptures.  Vide 
Millium, ubi sup.
6  Sionita, de Urb. Orient. p. 41, et Marracc. de Alc. p. 33.		7  
Reland. de Rel. Moh. p. 265.

mankind; and as to matter of practice, in the observance of the immutable and 
eternal laws of right and wrong, together with such other precepts and 
ceremonies as GOD should think fit to order for the time being, according to 
the different dispensations in different ages of the world: for these last he 
allowed were things indifferent in their own nature, and became obligatory by 
GOD'S positive precept only; and were therefore temporary, and subject to 
alteration according to his will and pleasure.  And to this religion he gives 
the name of Islām, which word signifies resignation, or submission to the 
service and commands of GOD;1 and is used as the proper name of the Mohammedan 
religion, which they will also have to be the same at bottom with that of all 
the prophets from Adam.
   Under pretext that this eternal religion was in his time corrupted, and 
professed in its purity by no one sect of men, Mohammed pretended to be a 
prophet sent by GOD to reform those abuses which had crept into it, and to 
reduce it to its primitive simplicity; with the addition, however, of peculiar 
laws and ceremonies, some of which had been used in former times, and others 
were now first instituted.  And he comprehended the whole substance of his 
doctrine under these two propositions, or articles of faith; viz., that there 
is but one GOD, and that himself was the apostle of GOD; in consequence of 
which latter article, all such ordinances and institutions as he thought fit 
to establish must be received as obligatory and of divine authority.
   The Mohammedans divide their religion, which, as I just now said, they call 
Islām, into two distinct parts: Imān, i.e., faith, or theory, and Dīn, i.e., 
religion, or practice; and teach that it is built on five fundamental points, 
one belonging to faith, and the other four to practice.
   The first is that confession of faith which I have already mentioned; that 
"there is no god but the true GOD; and that Mohammed is his apostle."  Under 
which they comprehend six distinct branches; viz., 1.  Belief in GOD; 2.  In 
his angels; 3.  In his scriptures; 4.  In his prophets; 5.  In the 
resurrection and day of judgment; and, 6.  In GOD'S absolute decree and 
predetermination both of good and evil.
   The four points relating to practice are: 1.  Prayer, under which are 
comprehended those washings or purifications which are necessary preparations 
required before prayer; 2.  Alms; 3.  Fasting; and, 4.  The pilgrimage to 
Mecca.  Of each of these I shall speak in their order.
   That both Mohammed and those among his followers who are reckoned orthodox, 
had and continue to have just and true notions of GOD and his attributes 
(always excepting their obstinate and impious rejecting of the Trinity), 
appears so plain from the Korān itself and all the Mohammedan divines, that it 
would be loss of time to refute those who suppose the GOD of Mohammed to be 
different from the true GOD, and only a fictitious deity or idol of his own 
creation.2  Nor shall I enter into any of the Mohammedan controversies 
concerning the divine nature and attributes, because I shall have a more 
proper opportunity of doing it elsewhere.3

   1  The root Salama, from whence Islām is formed, in the first and fourth 
conjugations, signifies also to be saved, or to enter into a state of 
salvation; according to which, Islām may be translated the religion or state 
of salvation: but the other sense is more approved by the Mohammedans, and 
alluded to in the Korān itself.  See c. 2 and c. 3.
   2  Marracc. in Alc. p. 102.		3  Sect VIII.

   The existence of angels and their purity are absolutely required to be 
believed in the Korān; and he is reckoned an infidel who denies there are such 
beings, or hates any of them,4 or asserts any distinction of sexes among them.  
They believe them to have pure and subtle bodies, created of fire;5 that they 
neither eat nor drink, nor propagate their species; that they have various 
forms and offices; some adoring GOD in different postures, others singing 
praises to him, or interceding for mankind.  They hold that some of them are 
employed in writing down the actions of men; others in carrying the throne of 
GOD and other services.
   The four angels whom they look on as more eminently in GOD'S favour, and 
often mention on account of the offices assigned them, are Gabriel, to whom 
they give several titles, particularly those of the holy spirit,1 and the 
angel of revelations,2 supposing him to be honoured by GOD with a greater 
confidence than any other, and to be employed in writing down the divine 
decrees;3 Michael, the friend and protector of the Jews;4 Azraėl, the angel of 
death, who separates men's souls from their bodies;5 and Israfīl, whose office 
it will be to sound the trumpet at the resurrection.6  The Mohammedans also 
believe that two guardian angels attend on every man, to observe and write 
down his actions,7 being changed every day, and therefore called al Moakkibāt, 
or the angels who continually succeed one another.
   This whole doctrine concerning angels Mohammed and his disciples have 
borrowed from the Jews, who learned the names and offices of those beings from 
the Persians, as themselves confess.8  The ancient Persians firmly believed 
the ministry of angels, and their superintendence over the affairs of this 
world (as the Magians still do), and therefore assigned them distinct charges 
and provinces, giving their names to their months and the days of their 
months.  Gabriel they called Sorūsh and Revān bakhsh, or the giver of souls, 
in opposition to the contrary office of the angel of death, to whom among 
other names they gave that of Mordād, or the giver of death; Michael they 
called Beshter, who according to them provides sustenance for mankind.9  The 
Jews teach that the angels were created of fire;10 that they have several 
offices;11 that they intercede for men,12 and attend them.13  The angel of death 
they name Dūma, and say he calls dying persons by their respective names at 
their last hour.14
   The devil, whom Mohammed names Eblīs from his despair, was once one of 
those angels who are nearest to GOD'S presence, called Azazīl,15 and fell, 
according to the doctrine of the Korān, for refusing to pay homage to Adam at 
the command of GOD.16
   Besides angels and devils, the Mohammedans are taught by the

   4  Kor. c. 2, p. 13.		5  Ibid. c. 7 and 38.		1  Ibid. c. 2, p. 
12.		2  See the notes, Ibid, p. 13.	
3  Vide Hyde, Hist. Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 262.		4  Vide Ibid. p. 271, 
and not. in Kor. p. 13.		5  Vide not. Ibid. p. 4.		6  Kor. c. 
6, 13, and 86.  The offices of these four angels are described almost in the 
same manner in the apocryphal gospel of Barnabas, where it is said that 
Gabriel reveals the secrets of GOD, Michael combats against his enemies, 
Raphael receives the souls of those who die, and Uriel is to call every one to 
judgment on the last day.  See the Menagiana, tom. iv. p. 333.
7  Kor. c. 10.		8  Talmud Hieros. in Rosh hashan.			9  
Vide Hyde, ubi sup. c. 19 and 20.
10  Gemar. in Hagig. and Bereshit rabbah, &c.  Vide Psalm civ. 4.		11  
Yalkut hadash.		12  Gemar. in Shebet, and Bava Bathra, &c.	
	13  Midrash, Yalkut Shemūni.		14  Gemar.  Berachoth.		15  
Vide Reland. de Rel. Moh. p. 189, &c.		16  Kor. c. 2.  See also c.7, 
38, &c.

Korān to believe an intermediate order of creatures, which they call Jin or 
Genii, created also of fire,17 but of a grosser fabric than angels; since they 
eat and drink, and propagate their species, and are subject to death.1  Some 
of these are supposed to be good, and others bad, and capable of future 
salvation or damnation, as men are; whence Mohammed pretended to be sent for 
the conversion of genii as well as men.2  The orientals pretend that these 
genii inhabited the world for many ages before Adam was created, under the 
government of several successive princes, who all bore the common name of 
Solomon; but falling at length into an almost general corruption, Eblīs was 
sent to drive them into a remote part of the earth, there to be confined: that 
some of that generation still remaining, were by Tahmūrath, one of the ancient 
kings of Persia, who waged war against them, forced to retreat into the famous 
mountains of Kāf.  Of which successions and wars they have many fabulous and 
romantic stories.  They also make different ranks and degrees among these 
beings (if they be not rather supposed to be of a different species), some 
being called absolutely Jin, some Peri or fairies, some Div or giants, others 
Tacwīns or fates.3
   The Mohammedan notions concerning these genii agree almost exactly with 
what the Jews write of a sort of demons, called Shedīm, whom some fancy to 
have been begotten by two angels named Aza and Azaėl, on Naamah the daughter 
of Lamech, before the Flood.4  However, the Shedīm, they tell us, agree in 
three things with the ministering angels; for that, like them, they have 
wings, and fly from one end of the world to the other, and have some knowledge 
of futurity; and in three things they agree with men, like whom they eat and 
drink, are propagated, and die.5  They also say that some of them believe in 
the law of Moses, and are consequently good, and that others of them are 
infidels and reprobates.6
   As to the scriptures, the Mohammedans are taught by the Korān that GOD, in 
divers ages of the world, gave revelations of his will in writing to several 
prophets, the whole and every word of which it is absolutely necessary for a 
good Moslem to believe.  The number of these sacred books were, according to 
them, 104.  Of which ten were given to Adam, fifty to Seth, thirty to Edrīs or 
Enoch, ten to Abraham; and the other four, being the Pentateuch, the Psalms, 
the Gospel, and the Korān, were successively delivered to Moses, David, Jesus, 
and Mohammed; which last being the seal of the prophets, those revelations are 
now closed, and no more are to be expected.  All these divine books, except 
the four last, they agree to be now entirely lost, and their contents unknown; 
though the Sabians have several books which they attribute to some of the 
antediluvian prophets.  And of those four the Pentateuch, Psalms, and Gospel, 
they say, have undergone so many alterations and corruptions, that though 
there may possibly be some part of the true word of GOD therein, yet no credit 
is to be given to the present copies in the hands of the Jews and Christians.  
The Jews in particular are frequently reflected on in the Korān for falsifying 
and corrupting their copies of their law; and some instances of such pre-

   17  Kor. c. 55.  See the notes there.		1  Jallalo'ddin, in Kor. c. 2 
and 18.		2  Vide Kor. c. 55, 72, and 74.
3  See D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient. p. 369, 820, &c.		4  In libro Zohar.
		5  Gemara, in Hagiga.	
6  Igrat Baale hayyim. c. 15.

tended corruptions, both in that book and the two others, are produced by 
Mohammedan writers, wherein they merely follow their own prejudices, and the 
fabulous accounts of spurious legends.  Whether they have any copy of the 
Pentateuch among them different from that of the Jews or not, I am not 
entirely satisfied, since a person who travelled into the east was told that 
they had the books of Moses, though very much corrupted;1 but I know nobody 
that has ever seen them.  However, they certainly have and privately read a 
book which they call the Psalms of David, in Arabic and Persian, to which are 
added some prayers of Moses, Jonas, and others.2  This Mr. Reland supposes to 
be a translation from our copies (though no doubt falsified in more places 
than one); but M. D'Herbelot says it contains not the same Psalms which are in 
our Psalter, being no more than an extract from thence mixed with other very 
different pieces.3  The easiest way to reconcile these two learned gentlemen, 
is to presume that they speak of different copies.  The Mohammedans have also 
a Gospel in Arabic, attributed to St. Barnabas, wherein the history of Jesus 
Christ is related in a manner very different from what we find in the true 
Gospels, and correspondent to those traditions which Mohammed has followed in 
his Korān.  Of this Gospel the Moriscoes in Africa have a translation in 
Spanish;4 and there is in the library of Prince Eugene of Savoy, a manuscript 
of some antiquity, containing an Italian translation of the same Gospel,5 
made, it is to be supposed, for the use of renegades.  This book appears to be 
no original forgery of the Mohammedans, though they have no doubt interpolated 
and altered it since, the better to serve their purpose; and in particular, 
instead of the Paraclete or Comforter,6 they have in this apocryphal gospel 
inserted the word Periclyte, that is, the famous or illustrious, by which they 
pretend their prophet was foretold by name, that being the signification of 
Mohammed in Arabic:1 and this they say to justify that passage of the Korān,2 
where Jesus Christ is formally asserted to have foretold his coming, under his 
other name of Ahmed; which is derived from the same root as Mohammed, and of 
the same import.  From these or some other forgeries of the same stamp it is 
that the Mohammedans quote several passages, of which there are not the least 
footsteps in the New Testament.  But after all we must not hence infer that 
the Mohammedans, much less all of them, hold these copies of theirs to be the 
ancient and genuine scriptures themselves.  If any argue, from the corruption 
which they insist has happened to the Pentateuch and Gospel, that the Korān 
may possibly be corrupted also; they answer, that GOD has promised that he 
will take care of the latter, and preserve it from any addition or 
diminution;3 but that he left the two other to the care of men.  However, they 
confess there are some various readings in the Korān,4 as has been observed.
   Besides the books above mentioned, the Mohammedans also take notice of the 
writings of Daniel and several other prophets, and even

   1  Terry's Voyage to the East Indies, p. 277.		2  De Rel. Moham. 
p. 23.		3  A copy of this kind, he tells us, is in the library of 
the Duke of Tuscany, Bibl. Orient. p. 924.		4  Reland, ubi sup.
	5  Menagian, tom. iv. p. 321, &c.		6  John xiv. 16, 26, xv. 26, 
and xvi.		7 , compared with Luke  xxiv. 49.		1  See Toland's 
Nazarenus, the first eight chapters.			2  Cap. 61.		3  
Kor. c. 15.	
4  Reland, ubi sup. p. 24, 27.

make quotations thence; but these they do not believe to be divine scripture, 
or of any authority in matters of religion.5
   The number of the prophets, which have been from time to time sent by GOD 
into the world, amounts to no less than 224,000, according to one Mohammedan 
tradition, or to 124,000, according to another; among whom 313 were apostles, 
sent with special commissions to reclaim mankind from infidelity and 
superstition; and six of them brought new laws or dispensations, which 
successively abrogated the preceding: these were Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, 
Jesus, and Mohammed.  All the prophets in general the Mohammedans believe to 
have been free from great sins and errors of consequence, and professors of 
one and the same religion, that is Islām, notwithstanding the different laws 
and institutions which they observed.  They allow of degrees among them, and 
hold some of them to be more excellent and honourable than others.6  The first 
place they give to the revealers and establishers of new dispensations, and 
the next to the apostles.
   In this great number of prophets, they not only reckon divers patriarchs 
and persons named in scripture, but not recorded to have been prophets 
(wherein the Jewish and Christian writers have sometimes led the way1), as 
Adam, Seth, Lot, Ismael, Nun, Joshua, &c., and introduce some of them under 
different names, as Enoch, Heber, and Jethro, who are called in the Korān, 
Edrīs, Hūd, and Shoaib; but several others whose very names do not appear in 
scripture (though they endeavour to find some persons there to fix them on), 
as Saleh, Khedr, Dhu'lkefl, &c.  Several of their fabulous traditions 
concerning these prophets we shall occasionally mention in the notes on the 
   As Mohammed acknowledged the divine authority of the Pentateuch, Psalms, 
and Gospel, he often appeals to the consonancy of the Korān with those 
writings, and to the prophecies which he pretended were therein concerning 
himself, as proofs of his mission; and he frequently charges the Jews and 
Christians with stifling the passages which bear witness to him.2  His 
followers also fail not to produce several texts even from our present copies 
of the Old and New Testament, to support their master's cause.3
   The next article of faith required by the Korān is the belief of a general 
resurrection and a future judgment.  But before we consider the Mohammedan 
tenets in those points, it will be proper to mention what they are taught to 
believe concerning the intermediate state, both of the body and of the soul, 
after death.
   When a corpse is laid in the grave, they say he is received by an angel, 
who gives him notice of the coming of the two examiners; who are two black 
livid angels, of a terrible appearance, named Monker and Nakīr.  These order 
the dead person to sit upright, and examine him concerning his faith, as to 
the unity of GOD, and the mission of Mohammed: if he answer rightly, they 
suffer the body to rest in peace, and it is refreshed by the air of paradise; 
but if not, they beat him on the temples with iron maces, till he roars out 
for anguish so loud, that

   5  Idem, ibid. p. 41.		6  Kor. c 2, p. 27, &c.		1  Thus 
Heber is said to have been a prophet by the Jews (Seder Olam. p. 2), and Adam 
by Epiphanius (Adv. Hęres. p. 6).  See also Joseph. Ant. l. I, c. 2.	
	2  Kor. c. 2, p. 5, 10, 16; c. 3, &c.		3  Some of these texts 
are produced by Dr. Prideaux at the end of his Life of Mahomet, and more by 
Marracci in Alcor. p. 26, &c.

he is heard by all from east to west, except men and genii.  Then they press 
the earth on the corpse, which is gnawed and stung till the resurrection by 
ninety-nine dragons, with seven heads each; or as others say, their sins will 
become venomous beasts, the grievous ones stinging like dragons, the smaller 
like scorpions, and the others like serpents: circumstances which some 
understand in a figurative sense.4
   The examination of the sepulchre is not only founded on an express 
tradition of Mohammed, but is also plainly hinted at, though not directly 
taught, in the Korān,1 as the commentators agree.  It is therefore believed by 
the orthodox Mohammedans in general, who take care to have their graves made 
hollow, that they may sit up with more ease while they are examined by the 
angels;2 but is utterly rejected by the sect of the Mótazalites, and perhaps 
by some others.
   These notions Mohammed certainly borrowed from the Jews, among whom they 
were very anciently received.3  They say that the angel of death coming and 
sitting on the grave, the soul immediately enters the body and raises it on 
its feet; that he then examines the departed person, and strikes him with a 
chain half of iron and half of fire; at the first blow all his limbs are 
loosened, at the second his bones are scattered, which are gathered together 
again by the angels, and the third stroke reduces the body to dust and ashes, 
and it returns into the grave.  This rack or torture they call Hibbūt 
hakkeber, or the beating of the sepulchre, and pretend that all men in general 
must undergo it, except only those who die on the evening of the sabbath, or 
have dwelt in the land of Israel.4
   It it be objected to the Mohammedans that the cry of the persons under such 
examination has been never heard; or if they be asked how those can undergo it 
whose bodies are burnt or devoured by beasts or birds, or otherwise consumed 
without burial; they answer, that it is very possible notwithstanding, since 
men are not able to perceive what is transacted on the other side the grave; 
and that it is sufficient to restore to life any part of the body which is 
capable of understanding the questions put by the angels.5
   As to the soul, they hold that when it is separated from the body by the 
angel of death, who performs his office with ease and gentleness towards the 
good, and with violence towards the wicked,6 it enters into that state which 
they call Al Berzakh,7 or the interval between death and the resurrection.  If 
the departed person was a believer, they say two angels meet it, who convey it 
to heaven, that its place there may be assigned, according to its merit and 
degree.  For they distinguish the souls of the faithful into three classes: 
the first of prophets, whose souls are admitted into paradise immediately; the 
second of martyrs; whose spirits, according to a tradition of Mohammed, rest 
in the crops of green birds which eat of the fruits and drink of the rivers of 
paradise; and the third of other believers, concerning the state of whose 
souls before the resurrection there are various opinions.  For, I.  Some say 
they stay near the sepulchres, with liberty, however, of going wherever they 
please; which they confirm with Mohammed's manner of saluting

   4  Al Ghazāli.  Vide Poc. not. in Port. Mosis, p. 241, &c.		1  
Cap. 8 and 47, &c.		2  Smith, de Morib. et Instit. Turcar. Ep. 2, p. 
57.		3  Vide Hyde, in Notisad Bobov. de Visit. Ęgrot. p. 19.	
	4  R. Elias, in Tishbi.  See also Buxtorf. Synag. Judaic. and Lexic. 
Talmud.		5  Vide Poc. ubi sup.		6  Kor. c. 79.  The Jews say 
the same, in Nishmat bayim. f. 77.		7  Vide Kor. c. 23, and not. ib.

them at their graves, and his affirming that the dead heard those salutations 
as well as the living, though they could not answer.  Whence perhaps proceeded 
the custom of visiting the tombs of relations, so common among the 
Mohammedans.1  2.  Others imagine they are with Adam, in the lowest heaven; 
and also support their opinion by the authority of their prophet, who gave out 
that in his return from the upper heavens in his pretended night journey, he 
saw there the souls of those who were destined to paradise on the right hand 
of Adam, and of those who were condemned to hell on his left.2  3.  Others 
fancy the souls of believers remain in the well Zemzem, and those of infidels 
in a certain well in the province of Hadramaut, called Borhūt; but this 
opinion is branded as heretical.  4.  Others say they stay near the graves for  
seven days; but that whither they go afterwards is uncertain.  5.  Others that 
they are all in the trumpet whose sound is to raise the dead.  And, 6.  Others 
that the souls of the good dwell in the forms of white birds, under the throne 
of GOD.3  As to the condition of the souls of the wicked, besides the opinions 
that have been already mentioned, the more orthodox hold that they are offered 
by the angels to heaven, from whence being repulsed as stinking and filthy, 
they are offered to the earth, and being also refused a place there, are 
carried down to the seventh earth, and being also refused a place there, are 
carried down to the seventh earth, and thrown into a dungeon, which they call 
Sajīn, under a green rock, or according to a tradition of Mohammed, under the 
devil's jaw,4 to be there tormented, till they are called up to be joined 
again to their bodies.
   Though some among the Mohammedans have thought that the resurrection will 
be merely spiritual, and no more than the returning of the soul to the place 
whence it first came (an opinion defended by Ebn Sina,5 and called by some the 
opinion of the philosophers6); and others, who allow man to consist of body 
only, that it will be merely corporeal; the received opinion is, that both 
body and soul will be raised, and their doctors argue strenuously for the 
possibility of the resurrection of the body, and dispute with great subtlety 
concerning the manner of it.7  But Mohammed has taken care to preserve one 
part of the body, whatever becomes of the rest, to serve for a basis of the 
future edifice, or rather a leaven for the mass which is to be joined to it.  
For he taught that a man's body was entirely consumed by the earth, except 
only the bone called al Ajb, which we name the os coccygis, or rump-bone; and 
that as it was the first formed in the human body, it will also remain 
uncorrupted till the last day, as a seed from whence the whole is to be 
renewed: and this he said would be effected by a forty days' rain which GOD 
should send, and which would cover the earth to the height of twelve cubits, 
and cause the bodies to sprout forth like plants.1  Herein also is Mohammed 
also beholden to the Jews, who say the same things of the bone Luz,2 excepting 
that what he attributes to a great rain, will be effected according to them by 
a dew, impregnating the dust of the earth.
   The time of the resurrection the Mohammedans allow to be a perfect

   1  Poc. ubi sup. p. 247.		2  Ibid. p. 248.  Consonant hereto are the 
Jewish notions of the souls of the just being on high, under the throne of 
glory.  Vide ibid. p. 156.		3  Ibid. p. 250.		4  Al Beidāwi.  
Vide Poc. ubi sup. p. 252.	
5  Or, as we corruptly name him, Avicenna.		6  Kenz al afrār.	
	7  Vide Poc. ubi sup. p. 254.	
1  Idem, ibid. p. 255, &c.		2  Bereshit. rabbah, &c.  Vide Poc. ubi 
sup. p. 117, &c.

secret to all but GOD alone: the angel Gabriel himself acknowledging his 
ignorance on this point when Mohammed asked him about it.  However, they say 
the approach of that day may be known from certain signs which are to precede 
it.  These signs they distinguish into two sorts-the lesser and the greater-
which I shall briefly enumerate after Dr. Pocock.3
   The lesser signs are: I.  They decay of faith among men.4  2.  The 
advancing of the meanest persons to eminent dignity.  3.  That a maid-servant 
shall become the mother of her mistress (or master); by which is meant either 
that towards the end of the world men shall be much given to sensuality, or 
that the Mohammedans shall then take many captives.  4.  Tumults and 
seditions.  5.  A war with the Turks.  6.  Great distress in the world, so 
that a man when he passes by another's grave shall say "Would to GOD I were in 
his place."  7.  That the provinces of Irāk and Syria shall refuse to pay 
their tribute.  And, 8.  That the buildings of Medina shall reach to Ahāb, or 
   The greater signs are:
   1.  The sun's rising in the west: which some have imagined it originally 
   2.  The appearance of the beast, which shall rise out of the earth, in the 
temple of Mecca, or on Mount Safā, or in the territory of Tāyef, or some other 
place.  This beast they say is to be sixty cubits high: though others, not 
satisfied with so small a size, will have her reach to the clouds and to 
heaven when her head only is out; and that she will appear for three days, but 
show only a third part of her body.  They describe this monster, as to her 
form, to be a compound of various species, having the head of a bull, the eyes 
of a hog, the ears of an elephant, the horns of a stag, the neck of an 
ostrich, the breast of a lion, the colour of a tiger, the back of a cat, the 
tail of a ram, the legs of a camel, and the voice of an ass.  Some say this 
beast is to appear three times in several places, and that she will bring with 
her the rod of Moses and the seal of Solomon; and being so swift that none can 
overtake or escape her, will with the first strike all the believers on the 
face and mark them with the word Mūmen, i.e., believer; and with the latter 
will mark the unbelievers, on the face likewise, with the word Cāfer, i.e., 
infidel, that every person may be known for what he really is.  They add that 
the same beast is to demonstrate the vanity of all religions except Islām, and 
to speak Arabic.  All this stuff seems to be the result of a confused idea of 
the beast in the Revelations.6
   3.  War with the Greeks, and the taking of Constantinople by 70,000 of the 
posterity of Isaac, who shall not win that city by force of arms, but the 
walls shall fall down while they cry out, "There is no god but GOD: GOD is 
most great!"  As they are dividing the spoil, news will come to them of the 
appearance of the Antichrist, whereupon they shall leave all, and return back.
   4.  The coming of Antichrist, whom the Mohammedans call al Masīh al Dajjāl, 
i.e., the false or lying Christ, and simply al Dajjāl.  He is to be one-eyed, 
and marked on the forehead with the letters C.F.R., signifying Cāfer, or 
infidel.  They say that the Jews give him the name of Messiah

   3  Ibid. p. 258, &c.		4  See Luke xviii. 8.		5  See Whiston's 
Theory of the Earth, bk. ii. p. 98, &c.	
6  Chap. xiii.

Ben David, and pretend he is to come in the last days and to be lord both of 
land and sea, and that he will restore the kingdom to them.  According to the 
traditions of Mohammed, he is to appear first between Irāk and Syria, or 
according to others, in the province of Khorasān; they add that he is to ride 
on an ass, that he will be followed by 70,000 Jews of Ispahān, and continue on 
earth forty days, of which one will be equal in length to a year, another to a 
month, another to a week, and the rest will be common days; that he is to lay 
waste all places, but will not enter Mecca or Medina, which are to be guarded 
by angels; and that at length he will be slain by Jesus, who is to encounter 
him at the gate of Lud.  It is said that Mohammed foretold several Anti-
christs, to the number of about thirty, but one of greater note than the rest.
   5.  The descent of Jesus on earth.  They pretend that he is to descend near 
the white tower to the east of Damascus, when the people are returned from the 
taking of Constantinople; that he is to embrace the Mohammedan religion, marry 
a wife, get children, kill Antichrist, and at length die after forty years', 
or, according to others, twenty-four years',1 continuance on earth.  Under him 
they say there will be great security and plenty in the world, all hatred and 
malice being laid aside; when lions and camels, bears and sheep, shall live in 
peace, and a child shall play with serpents unhurt.2
   6.  War with the Jews; of whom the Mohammedans are to make a religious 
slaughter, the very trees and stones discovering such of them as hide 
themselves, except only the tree called Gharkad, which is the tree of the 
   7.  The eruption of Gog and Magog, or, as they are called in the east, 
Yājūj and Mājūj; of whom many things are related in the Korān,3 and the 
traditions of Mohammed.  These barbarians, they tell us, having passed the 
lake of Tiberias, which the vanguard of their vast army will drink dry, will 
come to Jerusalem, and there greatly distress Jesus and his companions; till 
at his request GOD will destroy them, and fill the earth with their carcasses, 
which after some time GOD will send birds to carry away, at the prayers of 
Jesus and his followers.  Their bows, arrows, and quivers the Moslems will 
burn for seven years together;4 and at last GOD will send a rain to cleanse 
the earth, and to make it fertile.
   8.  A smoke, which shall fill the whole earth.5
   9.  An eclipse of the moon.  Mohammed is reported to have said that there 
would be three eclipses before the last hour; one to be seen in the east, 
another in the west, and the third in Arabia.
   10.  The returning of the Arabs to the worship of Allāt and al Uzza, and 
the rest of their ancient idols; after the decrease of every one in whose 
heart there was faith equal to the grain of mustard-seed, none but the very 
worst of men being left alive.  For GOD, they say, will send a cold 
odoriferous wind, blowing from Syria Damascena, which shall sweep away the 
souls of all the faithful, and the Korān itself, so that men will remain in 
the grossest ignorance for a hundred years.

   1  Al Thalabi, in Kor. c. 4. 		2  See Isaiah xi. 6, &c.	
	3  Cap. 18 and 21.	4  See Ezek. xxxix. 9; Rev. xx. 8.		5  See 
Kor. c. 44, and the notes thereon.  Compare also Joel ii. 30, and Rev. ix. 2.

   11.  The discovery of a vast heap of gold and silver by the retreating of 
the Euphrates, which will be the destruction of many.
   12.  The demolition of the Caaba, or temple of Mecca, by the Ethiopians.1
   13.  The speaking of beasts and inanimate things.
   14.  The breaking out of fire in the province of Hejāz; or, according to 
others, in Yaman.
   15.  The appearance of a man of the descendants of Kahtān, who shall drive 
men before him with his staff.
   16.  The coming of the Mohdi, or director; concerning whom Mohammed 
prophesied that the world should not have an end till one of his own family 
should govern the Arabians, whose name should be the same with his own name, 
and whose father's name should also be the same with his father's name; and 
who should fill the earth with righteousness.  This person the Shiites believe 
to be now alive, and concealed in some secret place, till the time of his 
manifestation; for they suppose him to be no other than the last of the twelve 
Imāms, named Mohammed Abu'lkasem, as their prophet was, and the son of Hassan 
al Askeri, the eleventh of that succession.  He was born at Sermanrai in the 
255th year of the Hejra.2  From this tradition, it is to be presumed, an 
opinion pretty current among the Christians took its rise, that the 
Mohammedans are in expectation of their prophet's return.
   17.  A wind which shall sweep away the souls of all who have but a grain of 
faith in their hearts, as has been mentioned under the tenth sign.
   These are the greater signs, which, according to their doctrine, are to 
precede the resurrection, but still leave the hour of it uncertain: for the 
immediate sign of its being come will be the first blast of the trumpet; which 
they believe will be sounded three times.  The first they call the blast of 
consternation; at the hearing of which all creatures in heaven and earth shall 
be struck with terror, except those whom GOD shall please to exempt from it.  
The effects attributed to this first sound of the trumpet are very wonderful: 
for they say the earth will be shaken, and not only all buildings, but the 
very mountains levelled; that the heavens shall melt, the sun be darkened, the 
stars fall, on the death of the angels, who, as some imagine, hold them 
suspended between heaven and earth, and the sea shall be troubled and dried 
up, or, according ot others, turned into flames, the sun, moon, and stars 
being thrown into it: the Korān, to express the greatness of the terror of 
that day, adds that women who give suck shall abandon the care of their 
infants, and even the she-camels which have gone ten months with young (a most 
valuable part of the substance of that nation) shall be utterly neglected.  A 
farther effect of this blast will be that concourse of beasts mentioned in the 
Korān,1 though some doubt whether it be to precede the resurrection or not.  
They who suppose it will precede, think that ll kinds of animals, forgetting 
their respective natural fierceness and timidity, will run together into one 
place, being terrified by the sound of the trumpet and the sudden shock of 

   The Mohammedans believe that this first blast will be followed by a second, 
which they call the blast of examination,2 when all creatures, both in heaven 
and earth, shall die or be annihilated, except those which GOD shall please to 
exempt from the common fate;3 and this, they say, shall happen in the 
twinkling of an eye, nay, in an instant; nothing surviving except GOD alone, 
with paradise and hell, and the inhabitants of those two places, and throne of 
glory.4  The last who shall die will be the angel of death.
   Forty years after this will be heard the blast of resurrection, when the 
trumpet shall be sounded the third time by Israfīl, who, together with Gabriel 
and Michael, will be previously restored to life, and standing on the rock of 
the temple of Jerusalem,5 shall, at GOD'S command, call together all the dry 
and rotten bones, and other dispersed parts of the bodies, and the very hairs, 
to judgment.  This angel having, by the divine order, set the trumpet to his 
mouth, and called together all the souls from all parts, will throw them into 
his trumpet, from whence, on his giving the last sound, at the command of GOD, 
they will fly forth like bees, and fill the whole space between heaven and 
earth, and then repair to their respective bodies, which the opening earth 
will suffer to arise; and the first who shall so arise, according to a 
tradition of Mohammed, will be himself.  For this birth the earth will be 
prepared by the rain above mentioned, which is to fall continually for forty 
years,6 and will resemble the seed of a man, and be supplied from the water 
under the throne of GOD, which is called living water; by the efficacy and 
virtue of which the dead bodies shall spring forth from their graves, as they 
did in their mother's womb, or as corn sprouts forth by common rain, till they 
become perfect; after which breath will be breathed into them, and they will 
sleep in their sepulchres till they are raised to life at the last trump.
   As to the length of the last day of judgment the Korān in one place tells 
us that it will last 1,000 years,1 and in another 50,000.2  To reconcile this 
apparent contradiction, the commentators use several shifts: some saying they 
know not what measure of time GOD intends in those passages; others, that 
these forms of speaking are figurative and not to be strictly taken, and were 
designed only to express the terribleness of that day, it being usual for the 
Arabs to describe what they dislike as of long continuance, and what they 
like, as the contrary; and others suppose them spoken only in reference to the 
difficulty of the business of the day, which, if GOD should commit to any of 
his creatures, they would not be able to go through it in so many thousand 
years; to omit some other opinions which we may take notice of elsewhere.
   Having said so much in relation to the time of the resurrection, let us now 
see who are to be raised from the dead, in what manner and

   2  Several writers, however, make no distinction between this blast and the 
first, supposing the trumpet will sound but twice.  See the notes to Kor. c. 
39.		3  Kor. c 39.		4  To these some add the spirit who bears 
the waters on which the throne is placed, the preserved table, wherein the 
decrees of GOD are registered, and the pen wherewith they are written; all 
which things the Mohammedans imagine were created before the world.	
	5  In this circum-cumstance the Mohammedans follow the Jews, who also 
agree that the trumpet will sound more than once.  Vide R. Bechai in Biur 
hattorah, and Otioth shel R. Akiba.		6  Elsewhere (see before p. 61) this 
rain is said to continue only forty days; but it rather seems that it is to 
fall during the whole interval between the second and third blasts.	
	1  Kor. c. 32.		2  Ibid. c. 70.

form they shall be raised, in what place they shall be assembled, and to what 
end, according to the doctrine of the Mohammedans.
   That the resurrection will be general, and extend to all creatures both 
angels, genii, men, and animals, is the received opinion, which they support 
by the authority of the Korān, though that passage which is produced to prove 
the resurrection of brutes be otherwise interpreted by some.3
   The manner of their resurrection will be very different.  Those who are 
destined to be partakers of eternal happiness will arise in honour and 
security; and those who are doomed to misery, in disgrace and under dismal 
apprehensions.  As to mankind, they say that they will be raised perfect in 
all their parts and members, and in the same state as they came out of their 
mother's wombs, that is, barefooted, naked, and uncircumcised; which 
circumstances when Mohammed was telling his wife Ayesha, she, fearing the 
rules of modesty might be thereby violated, objected that it would be very 
indecent for men and women to look upon one another in that condition; but he 
answered her, that the business of the day would be too weighty and serious to 
allow them the making use of that liberty.  Others, however, allege the 
authority of their prophet for a contrary opinion as to their nakedness, and 
pretend he asserted that the dead should arise dressed in the same clothes in 
which they died;1 unless we interpret these words, as some do, not so much of 
the outward dress of the body, as the inward clothing of the mind; and 
understand thereby that every person will rise again in the same state as to 
his faith or infidelity, his knowledge or ignorance, his good or bad works.  
Mohammed is also said to have farther taught, by another tradition, that 
mankind shall be assembled at the last day, distinguished into three classes.  
The first, of those who go on foot; the second, of those who ride; and the 
third, of those who creep groveling with their faces on the ground.  The first 
class is to consist of those believers whose good works have been few; the 
second of those who are in greater honour with GOD, and more acceptable to 
him; whence Ali affirmed that the pious when they come forth from their 
sepulchres, shall find ready prepared for them white-winged camels, with 
saddles of gold; wherein are to be observed some footsteps of the doctrine of 
the ancient Arabians;2 and the third class, they say, will be composed of the 
infidels, whom GOD shall cause to make their appearance with their faces on 
the earth, blind, dumb, and deaf.  But the ungodly will not be thus only 
distinguished; for, according to a tradition of the prophet, there will be ten 
sorts of wicked men on whom GOD shall on that day fix certain discretory 
marks.  The first will appear in the form of apes; these are the professors of 
Zendicism: the second in that of swine; these are they who have been greedy of 
filthy lucre, and enriched themselves by public oppression: the third will be 
brought with their heads reversed and their feet distorted; these are the 
usurers: the fourth will wander about blind; these are unjust judges: the 
fifth will be deaf, dumb, and blind, understanding nothing; these are they

   3 See the notes to Kor. c. 81, and the preceding page.		1  In this 
also they follow their old guides, the Jews, who say that if the wheat which 
is sown naked rise clothed, it is no wonder the pious who are buried in their 
clothes should rise with them.  Gemar.  Sanhedr. fol. 90.		2  See 
before, Sect. I. p. 16.

who glory in their own works: the sixth will gnaw their tongues, which will 
hang down upon their breasts, corrupted blood flowing from their mouths like 
spittle, so that everybody shall detest them; these are the learned men and 
doctors, whose actions contradict their sayings: the seventh will have their 
hands and feet cut off; these are they who have injured their neighbours: the 
eighth will be fixed to the trunks of palm trees or stakes of wood; these are 
the false accusers and informers: the ninth will stink worse than a corrupted 
corpse; these are they who have indulged their passions and voluptuous 
appetites, but refused GOD such part of their wealth as was due to him: the 
tenth will be clothed with garments daubed with pitch; and these are the 
proud, the vainglorious, and the arrogant.
   As to the place where they are to be assembled to judgment, the Korān and 
the traditions of Mohammed agree that it will be on the earth, but in what 
part of the earth it is not agreed.  Some say their prophet mentioned Syria 
for the place; others, a white and even tract of land, without inhabitants or 
any signs of buildings.  Al Ghazāli imagines it will be a second earth, which 
he supposes to be of silver; and others, an earth which has nothing in common 
with ours but the name; having, it is possible, heard something of the new 
heavens and new earth mentioned in scripture: whence the Korān has this 
expression, "on the day wherein the earth shall be changed into another 
   The end of the resurrection the Mohammedans declare to be, that they who 
are so raised may give an account of their actions, and receive the reward 
thereof.  And they believe that not only mankind, but the genii and irrational 
animals also,2 shall be judged on this great day; when the unarmed cattle 
shall take vengeance on the horned, till entire satisfaction shall be given to 
the injured.3
   As to mankind, they hold that when they are all assembled together, they 
will not be immediately brought to judgment, but the angels will keep them in 
their ranks and order while they attend for that purpose; and this attendance 
some say is to last forty years, others seventy, others 300, nay, some say no 
less than 50,000 years, each of them vouching their prophet's authority.  
During this space they will stand looking up to heaven, but without receiving 
any information or orders thence, and are to suffer grievous torments, both 
the just and the unjust, though with manifest difference.  For the limbs of 
the former, particularly those parts which they used to wash in making the 
ceremonial ablution before prayer, shall shine gloriously, and their 
sufferings shall be light in comparison, and shall last no longer than the 
time necessary to say the appointed prayers; but the latter will have their 
faces obscured with blackness, and disfigured with all the marks of sorrow and 
deformity.  What will then occasion not the least of their

   1  Cap. 14.		2  Kor. c. 6.  Vide Maimonid. More Nev. part iii. c. 
17.		3  This opinion the learned Greaves supposed to have taken its 
rise from the following words of Ezekiel, wrongly understood: "And as for ye, 
O my flock thus saith the LORD GOD, Behold I, even I, will judge between the 
fat cattle, and between the lean cattle; because ye have thrust with side and 
with shoulder, and pushed all the diseased with your horns, till ye have 
scattered them abroad; therefore will I save my flock, and they shall no more 
be a prey, and I will judge between cattle and cattle," &c.  Ezek. xxxiv. 17, 
20, 21, 22.  Much might be said concerning brutes deserving future reward and 
punishment.  See Bayle, Dict. Hist. Art. Rorarius, Rem. D. &c.

pain, is a wonderful and incredible sweat, which will even stop their mouths, 
and in which they will be immersed in various degrees according to their 
demerits, some to the ankles only, some to the knees, some to the middle, some 
so high as their mouth, and others as their ears.  And this sweat, they say, 
will be provoked not only by that vast concourse of all sorts of creatures 
mutually pressing and treading on one another's feet, but by the near and 
unusual approach of the sun, which will be then no farther from them than the 
distance of a mile, or, as some translate the word, the signification of which 
is ambiguous, than the length of a bodkin.  So that their skulls will boil 
like a pot,1 and they will be all bathed in sweat.  From this inconvenience, 
however, the good will be protected by the shade of GOD'S throne; but the 
wicked will be so miserably tormented with it, and also with hunger, and 
thirst, and a stifling air, that they will cry out, "Lord, deliver us from 
this anguish, though thou send us into hell fire."2  What they fable of the 
extraordinary heat of the sun on this occasion, the Mohammedans certainly 
borrowed from the Jews, who say, that for the punishment of the wicked on the 
last day, that planet shall be drawn from its sheath, in which it is now put 
up, lest it should destroy all things by its excessive heat.3
   When those who have risen shall have waited the limited time, the 
Mohammedans believe GOD will at length appear to judge them; Mohammed 
undertaking the office of intercessor, after it shall have been declined by 
Adam, Noah, Abraham, and Jesus, who shall beg deliverance only for their own 
souls.  They say that on this solemn occasion GOD will come in the clouds, 
surrounded by angels, and will produce the books wherein the actions of every 
person are recorded by their guardian angels,4 and will command the prophets 
to bear witness against those to whom they have been respectively sent.  Then 
every one will be examined concerning all his words and actions, uttered and 
done by him in this life; not as if GOD needed any information in those 
respects, but to oblige the person to make public confession and 
acknowledgment of GOD'S justice.  The particulars of which they shall give an 
account, as Mohammed himself enumerated them, are-of their time, how they 
spent it; of their wealth, by what means they acquired it, and how they 
employed it; of their bodies, wherein they exercised them; of their knowledge 
and learning, what use they made of them.  It is said, however, that Mohammed 
has affirmed that no less than 70,000 of his followers should be permitted to 
enter paradise without any previous examination, which seems to be 
contradictory to what is said above.  To the questions we have mentioned each 
person shall answer, and make his defence in the best manner he can, 
endeavouring to excuse himself by casting the blame of his evil deeds on 
others, so that a dispute shall arise even between the soul and the body, to 
which of them their guilt ought to be imputed, the soul saying, "O Lord, my 
body I received from thee; for thou createdst me without a hand to lay hold 
with, a foot to walk with, an eye to see with, or an understanding to 
apprehend with, till I came and entered into this body; therefore, punish it 
eternally, but deliver me."  The body , on the other

   1  Al Ghazāli.		2  Idem.		3  Vide Pocock, not. in Port. Mosis, 
p. 277.		4  See before, p. 56.

side, will make this apology:-"O Lord, thou createdst me like a stock of wood, 
having neither hand that I could lay hold with, nor foot that I could walk 
with, till this soul, like a ray of light, entered into me, and my tongue 
began to speak, my eye to see, and my foot to walk; therefore, punish it 
eternally, but deliver me."  But GOD will propound to them the following 
parable of the blind man and the lame man, which, as well as the preceding 
dispute, was borrowed by the Mohammedans from the Jews:5 A certain king, 
having a pleasant garden, in which were ripe fruits, set two persons to keep 
it, one of whom was blind and the other lame, the former not being able to see 
the fruit nor the latter to gather it; the lame man, however, seeing the 
fruit, persuaded the blind man to take him upon his shoulders; and by that 
means he easily gathered the fruit, which they divided between them.  The lord 
of the garden, coming some time after, and inquiring after his fruit, each 
began to excuse himself; the blind man said he had no eyes to see with, and 
the lame man that he had no feet to approach the trees.  But the king, 
ordering the lame man to be set on the blind, passed sentence on and punished 
them both.  And in the same manner will GOD deal with the body and the soul.  
As these apologies will not avail on that day, so will it also be in vain for 
any one to deny his evil actions, since men and angels and his own members, 
nay, the very earth itself, will be ready to bear witness against him.
   Though the Mohammedans assign so long a space for the attendance of the 
resuscitated before their trial, yet they tell us the trial itself will be 
over in much less time, and, according to an expression of Mohammed, familiar 
enough to the Arabs, will last no longer than while one may milk an ewe, or 
than the space between the two milkings of a she-camel.1  Some, explaining 
those words so frequently used in the Korān, "GOD will be swift in taking an 
account," say that he will judge all creatures in the space of half a day, and 
others that it will be done in less time than the twinkling of an eye.2
   At this examination they also believe that each person will have the book, 
wherein all the actions of his life are written, delivered to him; which books 
the righteous will receive in their right hand, and read with great pleasure 
and satisfaction; but the ungodly will be obliged to take them against their 
wills in their left,3 which will be bound behind their backs, their right hand 
being tied up to their necks.4
   To show the exact justice which will be observed on this great day of 
trial, the next thing they describe is the balance, wherein all things shall 
be weighted.  They say it will be held by Gabriel, and that it is of so vast a 
size, that its two scales, one of which hangs over paradise, and the other 
over hell, are capacious enough to contain both heaven and earth.  Though some 
are willing to understand what is said in the Korān concerning this balance, 
allegorically, and only as a figurative representation of GOD'S equity, yet 
the more ancient and orthodox opinion is that it is to be taken literally; and 
since words and actions, being mere accidents, are not capable of being 

   5  Gemara, Sanhed. c. II.  R. Jos. Albo, Serm. iv. c. 33.  See also 
Epiphan. in Ancorat. sect. 89.		1  The Arabs use, after they have 
drawn some milk from the camel, to wait a while and let her young one suck a 
little, that she may give down her milk more plentifully at the second 
milking.		2  Pocock, not. in Port. Mosis, p. 278-282.  See also Kor. 
c. 2, p. 21.	
3  Kor. c. 17, 18, 69, and 84.		4  Jallalo'ddin.

weighed, they say that the books wherein they are written will be thrown into 
the scales, and according as those wherein the good or the evil actions are 
recorded shall preponderate, sentence will be given; those whose balance laden 
with their good works shall be heavy, will be saved, but those whose balances 
are light will be condemned.5  Nor will any one have cause to complain that 
GOD suffers any good action to pass unrewarded, because the wicked for the 
good they do have their reward in this life, and therefore can expect no 
favour in the next.
   The old Jewish writers make mention as well of the books to be produced at 
the last day, wherein men's actions are registered,6 as of the balance wherein 
they shall be weighed;7 and the scripture itself seems to have given the first 
notion of both.8  But what the Persian Magi believe of the balance comes 
nearest to the Mohammedan opinion.  They hold that on the day of judgment two 
angels, named Mihr and Sorūsh, will stand on the bridge we shall describe by-
and-bye, to examine every person as he passes; that the former, who represents 
the divine mercy, will hold a balance in his hand, to weigh the actions of 
men; that according to the report he shall make thereof to GOD, sentence will 
be pronounced, and those whose good works are found more ponderous, if they 
turn the scale but by the weight of a hair, will be permitted to pass forward 
to paradise; but those whose good works shall be found light, will be by the 
other angel, who represents GOD'S justice, precipitated from the bridge into 
   This examination being passed, and every one's works weighed in a just 
balance, that mutual retaliation will follow, according to which every 
creature will take vengeance one of another, or have satisfaction made them 
for the injuries which they have suffered.  And since there will then be no 
other way of returning like for like, the manner of giving this satisfaction 
will be by taking away a proportionable part of the good works of him who 
offered the injury, and adding it to those of him who suffered it.  Which 
being done, if the angels (by whose ministry this is to be performed) say, 
"Lord, we have given to every one his due; and there remaineth of this 
person's good works so much as equalleth the weight of an ant," GOD will of 
his mercy cause it to be doubled unto him, that he may be admitted into 
paradise; but if, on the contrary, his good works be exhausted, and there 
remain evil works only, and there be any who have not yet received 
satisfaction from him, GOD will order that an equal weight of their sins be 
added unto his, that he may be punished for them in their stead, and he will 
be sent to hell laden with both.  This will be the method of GOD'S dealing 
with mankind.  As to brutes, after they shall have likewise taken vengeance of 
one another, as we have mentioned above, he will command them to be changed 
into dust;2 wicked men being reserved to more grievous punishment: so that 
they shall cry out, on hearing this sentence passed on the brutes, "Would to 
GOD that we were dust also."  As to the genii, many Mohammedans are of opinion 
that such of them as are true believers will undergo the same fate as the 
irrational animals, and

   5  Kor. c. 23, 7, &c.		6  Midrash, Yalkut Shemuni, f. 153, c. 3.	
	7  Gemar. Sanhedr. f. 91, &c.	
8  Exod. xxxii. 32, 33, Dan. vii. 10, Revel. xx. 12, &c., and Dan. v. 27.	
	1  Hyde, de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 245, 401, &c.
2  Yet they say the dog of the seven sleepers, and Ezra's ass, which was 
raised to life, will, by peculiar favour, be admitted into paradise.  See Kor. 
c. 18, and c. 3.

have no other reward than the favour of being converted into dust; and for 
this they quote the authority of their prophet.  But this, however, is judged 
not so very reasonable, since the genii, being capable of putting themselves 
in the state of believers as well as men, must consequently deserve, as it 
seems, to be rewarded for their faith, as well as to be punished for 
infidelity.  Wherefore some entertain a more favourable opinion, and assign 
the believing genii a place near the confines of paradise, where they will 
enjoy sufficient felicity, though they be not admitted into that delightful 
mansion.  But the unbelieving genii, it is universally agreed, will be 
punished eternally, and be thrown into hell with the infidels of mortal race.  
It may not be improper to observe, that under the denomination of unbelieving 
genii, the Mohammedans comprehend also the devil and his companions.1
   The trials being over and the assembly dissolved, the Mohammedans hold that 
those who are to be admitted into paradise will take the right-hand way, and 
those who are destined to hell fire will take the left; but both of them must 
first pass the bridge, called in Arabic al Sirāt, which they say is laid over 
the midst of hell, and described to be finer than a hair, and sharper than the 
edge of a sword: so that it seems very difficult to conceive how any one shall 
be able to stand upon it: for which reason most of the sect of the Mótazalites 
reject it as a fable, though the orthodox think it a sufficient proof of the 
truth of this article, that it was seriously affirmed by him who never 
asserted a falsehood, meaning their prophet; who to add to the difficulty of 
the passage, has likewise declared that this bridge is beset on each side with 
briars and hooked thorns; which will, however, be no impediment to the good, 
for they shall pass with wonderful ease and swiftness, like lightning or the 
wind, Mohammed and his Moslems leading the way; whereas the wicked, what with 
the slipperiness and extreme narrowness of the path, the entangling of the 
thorns, and the extinction of the light, which directed the former to 
paradise, will soon miss their footing, and fall down headlong into hell, 
which is gaping beneath them.2
   This circumstance Mohammed seems also to have borrowed from the Magians, 
who teach that on the last day all mankind will be obliged to pass a bridge 
which they call Pūl Chīnavad, or Chīnavar, that is, the straight bridge, 
leading directly into the other world; on the midst of which they suppose the 
angels, appointed by GOD to perform that office, will stand, who will require 
of every one a strict account of his actions, and weigh them in the manner we 
have already mentioned.3  It is true the Jews speak likewise of the bridge of 
hell, which they say is no broader than a thread; but then they do not tell us 
that any shall be obliged to pass it, except the idolaters, who will fall 
thence into perdition.1
   As to the punishment of the wicked, the Mohammedans are taught that hell is 
divided into seven stories, or apartments, one below another, designed for the 
reception of as many distinct classes of the damned.2  The first which they 
call Jehennam, they say, will be the receptacle of those who acknowledged one 
GOD, that is, the wicked Mohammedans,

   1  Vide Kor. c. 18.		2  Pocock. ubi sup. p. 282-289.		3  
Hyde, de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 245, 402, &c.	
1  Midrash, Yalkut Reubeni. § Gehinnom.		2  Kor. c. 15.

who after having there been punished according to their demerits, will at 
length be released.  The second, uamed Ladhā, they assign to the Jews; the 
third, named al Hotama, to the Christians; the fourth named al Säir, to the 
Sabians; the fifth, named Sakar, to the Magians; the sixth, named al Jahīm, to 
the idolaters; and the seventh, which is the lowest and worst of all, and is 
called al Hāwiyat, to the hypocrites, or those who outwardly professed some 
religion, but in their hearts were of none.3  Over each of these apartments 
they believe there will be set a guard of angels,4 nineteen in number;5 to 
whom the damned will confess the just judgment of GOD, and beg them to 
intercede with him for some alleviation of their pain, or that they may be 
delivered by being annihilated.6
   Mohammed has, in his Korān and traditions, been very exact in describing 
the various torments of hell, which, according to him, the wicked will suffer 
both from intense heat and excessive cold.  We shall, however, enter into no 
detail of them here, but only observe that the degrees of these pains will 
also vary, in proportion to the crimes of the sufferer, and the apartment he 
is condemned to; and that he who is punished the most lightly of all will be 
shod with shoes of fire, the fervour of which will cause his skull to boil 
like a cauldron.  The condition of these unhappy wretches, as the same prophet 
teaches, cannot be properly called either life or death; and their misery will 
be greatly increased by their despair of being ever delivered from that place, 
since, according to that frequent expression in the Korān, "they must remain 
therein for ever."  It must be remarked, however, that the infidels alone will 
be liable to eternity of damnation, for the Moslems, or those who have 
embraced the true religion, and have been guilty of heinous sins, will be 
delivered thence after they shall have expiated their crimes by their 
sufferings.  The contrary of either of these opinions is reckoned heretical; 
for it is the constant orthodox doctrine of the Mohammedans that no unbeliever 
or idolater will ever be released, nor any person who in his lifetime 
professed an believed the unity of GOD be condemned to eternal punishment.  As 
to the time and manner of the deliverance of those believers whose evil 
actions shall outweigh their good, there is a tradition of Mohammed that they 
shall be released after they shall have been scorched and their skins burnt 
black, and shall afterwards be admitted into paradise; and when the 
inhabitants of that place shall, in contempt, call them infernals, GOD will, 
on their prayers, take from them that opprobrious appellation.  Others say he 
taught that while they continue in hell they shall be deprived of life, or (as 
his words are otherwise interpreted) be cast into a most profound sleep, that 
they may be the less sensible of their torments; and that they shall 
afterwards be received into paradise, and there revive on their being washed 
with the water of life; though some suppose they will

   3  Others fill these apartments with different company.  Some place in the 
second, the idolaters; in the third, Gog and Magog, &c.; in the fourth, the 
devils; in the fifth, those who neglect alms and prayers; and crowd the Jews, 
Christians, and Magians together in the sixth.  Some, again, will have the 
first to be prepared for the Dahrians, or those who deny the creation, and 
believe the eternity of the world; the second, for the Dualists, or Manichees, 
and the idolatrous Arabs; the third, for the Bramins of the Indies; the 
fourth, for the Jews; the fifth, for the Christians; and the sixth, for the 
Magians.  But all agree in assigning the seventh to the hypocrites.  Vide 
Millium, de Mohammedismo ante Moham. p. 412; D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 368, 
&c.		4  Kor. c. 40, 43, 74, &c.	
5  Ibid. c. 74.		6  Ibid. c. 40, 43.

be restored to life before they come forth from their place of punishment, 
that at their bidding farewell to their pains, they may have some little taste 
of them.  The time which these believers shall be detained there, according to 
a tradition handed down from their prophet, will not be less than 900 years, 
nor more than 7,000.  And as to the manner of their delivery, they say that 
they shall be distinguished by the marks of prostration on those parts of 
their bodies with which they used to touch the ground in prayer, and over 
which the fire will, therefore, have no power; and that being known by this 
characteristic, they will be relieved by the mercy of GOD, at the intercession 
of Mohammed and the blessed; whereupon those who shall have been dead will be 
restored to life, as has been said; and those whose bodies shall have 
contracted any sootiness or filth from the flames and smoke of hell, will be 
immersed in one of the rivers of paradise, called the river of life, which 
will wash them whiter than pearls.1
   For most of these circumstances relating to hell and the state of the 
damned, Mohammed was likewise, in all probability, indebted to the Jews, and 
in part to the Magians; both of whom agree in making seven distinct apartments 
in hell,2 though they vary in other particulars.  The former place an angel as 
a guard over each of these infernal apartments, and suppose he will intercede 
for the miserable wretches there imprisoned, who will openly acknowledge the 
justice of GOD in their condemnation.1  They also teach that the wicked will 
suffer a diversity of punishments, and that by intolerable cold2 as well as 
heat, and that their faces shall become black;3 and believe those of their own 
religion shall also be punished in hell hereafter, according to their crimes 
(for they hold that few or none will be found so exactly righteous as to 
deserve no punishment at all), but will soon be delivered thence, when they 
shall be sufficiently purged from their sins, by their father Abraham, or at 
the intercession of him or some other of the prophets.4  The Magians allow but 
one angel to preside over all the seven hells, who is named by them Vanįnd 
Yezįd, and, as they teach, assigns punishments proportionate to each person's 
crimes, restraining also the tyranny and excessive cruelty of the devil, who 
would, if left to himself, torment the damned beyond their sentence.5  Those 
of this religion do also mention and describe various kinds of torments, 
wherewith the wicked will be punished in the next life; among which though 
they reckon extreme cold to be one, yet they do not admit fire, out of 
respect, as it seems, to that element, which they take to be the 
representation of the divine nature; and, therefore, they rather choose to 
describe the damned souls as suffering by other kinds of punishments: such as 
an intolerable stink, the stinging and biting of serpents and wild beasts, the 
cutting and tearing of the flesh by the devils, excessive hunger and thirst, 
and the like.6
   Before we proceed to a description of the Mohammedan paradise, we must not 
forget to say something of the wall or partition which they imagine to be 
between that place and hell, and seems to be copied

   1  Poc. not. in Port. Mosis, p. 289-291.		2  Nishmat hayim, f. 32; 
Gemar. in Arubin, f. 19; Zohar. ad Exod. xxvi. 2, &c.; and Hyde, de Rel. Vet. 
Pers. p. 245.		1  Midrash, Yalkut Shemuni, part II, f. 116.	2  
Zohar. ad Exod. xix.	
3  Yalkut Shemuni, ubi sup. f. 86.		4  Nishmat hayim, f. 83; Gemar. 
Arubin, f. 19.  Vide Kor. c. 2, p. 10, and 3, p. 34, and notes there.	
	5  Hyde, de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 182.	6  Vide Eundem, ibid. p. 

from the great gulf of separation mentioned in scripture.7  They call it al 
Orf, and more frequently in the plural, al Arāf, a word derived from the verb 
arafa, which signifies to distinguish between things, or to part them; though 
some commentators give another reason for the imposition of this name, 
because, they say, those who stand on this partition will know and distinguish 
the blessed from the damned, by their respective marks or characteristics:8 
and others say the word properly intends anything that is high raised or 
elevated, as such a wall of separation must be supposed to be.9  The 
Mohammedan writers greatly differ as to the persons who are to be found on al 
Arāf.  Some imagine it to be a sort of limbo for the patriarchs and prophets, 
or for the martyrs and those who have been most eminent for sanctity, among 
whom, they say, there will be also angels in the form of men.  Others place 
here such whose good and evil works are so equal that they exactly 
counterpoise each other, and, therefore, deserve neither reward nor 
punishment; and these, they say, will, on the last day, be admitted into 
paradise, after they shall have performed an act of adoration, which will be 
imputed to them as a merit, and will make the scale of their good works to 
overbalance.  Others suppose this intermediate space will be a receptacle for 
those who have gone to war without their parents' leave, and therein suffered 
martyrdom; being excluded paradise for their disobedience, and escaping hell 
because they are martyrs.  The breadth of this partition wall cannot be 
supposed to be exceeding great, since not only those who shall stand thereon 
will hold conference with the inhabitants both of paradise and of hell, but 
the blessed and the damned themselves will also be able to talk to one 
   If Mohammed did not take his notions of the partition we have been 
describing from scripture, he must at least have borrowed it at second-hand 
from the Jews, who mention a thin wall dividing paradise form hell.2
   The righteous, as the Mohammedans are taught to believe, having surmounted 
the difficulties, and passed the sharp bridge above mentioned, before they 
enter paradise will be refreshed by drinking at the pond of their prophet, who 
describes it to be an exact square, of a month's journey in compass: its 
water, which is supplied by two pipes from al Cawthar, one of the rivers of 
paradise, being whiter than milk or silver and more odoriferous than musk, 
with as many cups set around it as there are stars in the firmament, of which 
water, whoever drinks will thirst no more for ever.3  This is the first taste 
which the blessed will have of their future and now near-approaching felicity.
   Though paradise be so very frequently mentioned in the Korān, yet it is a 
dispute among Mohammedans whether it be already created, or be to be created 
hereafter: the Mótazalites and some other sectaries asserting that there is 
not at present any such place in nature, and that the paradise which the 
righteous will inhabit in the next life, will be different form that form 
which Adam was expelled.  However, the orthodox profess the contrary, 
maintaining that it was created even

   7  Luke xvi. 26.		8  Jallalo'ddin.  Vide Kor. c.7.		9  Al 
Beidāwi.		1  Kor. ubi sup  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 121, &c.	
	2 Midrash. Yalkut Sioni. f. II.		3  Al Ghazāli.

before the world, and describe it, from their prophet's traditions, in the 
following manner.
   They say it is situate above the seven heavens (or in the seventh heaven) 
and next under the throne of GOD: and to express the amenity of the place, 
tell us that the earth of it is of the finest wheat flour, or of the purest 
musk, or, as others will have it, of saffron; that its stones are pearls and 
jacinths, the walls of its buildings enriched with gold and silver, and that 
the trunks of all its trees are of gold, among which the most remarkable is 
the tree called Tūba, or the tree of happiness.  Concerning this tree they 
fable that it stands in the palace of Mohammed, though a breach of it will 
reach to the house of every true believer;1 that it will be laden with 
pomegranates, grapes, dates, and other fruits of surprising bigness, and of 
tastes unknown to mortals.  So that if a man desire to eat of any particular 
kind of fruit, it will immediately be presented him, or if he choose flesh, 
birds ready dressed will be set before him according to his wish.  They add 
that the boughs of this tree will spontaneously bend down to the hand of the 
person who would gather of its fruits, and that it will supply the blessed not 
only with food, but also with silken garments, and beasts to ride on ready 
saddled and bridled, and adorned with rich trappings, which will burst forth 
from its fruits; and that this tree is so large, that a person mounted on the 
fleetest horse would not be able to gallop from one end of its shade to the 
other in a hundred years.2
   As plenty of water is one of the greatest additions to the pleasantness of 
any place, the Korān often speaks of the rivers of paradise as a principal 
ornament thereof; some of these rivers, they say, flow with water, some with 
milk, some with wine, and others with honey, all taking their rise from the 
roof of the tree Tūba: two of which rivers, named al Cawthar and the river of 
life, we have already mentioned.  And lest these should not be sufficient, we 
are told this garden is also watered by a great number of lesser springs and 
fountains, whose pebbles are rubies and emeralds, their earth of camphire, 
their beds of musk, and their sides of saffron, the most remarkable among them 
being Salsabīl and Tasnīm.
   But all these glories will be eclipsed by the resplendent and ravishing 
girls of paradise, called, from their large black eyes, Hūr al oyūn, the 
enjoyment of whose company will be a principal felicity of the faithful.  
These, they say, are created not of clay, as mortal women are, but of pure 
musk: being, as their prophet often affirms in his Korān, free from all 
natural impurities, defects, and inconveniences incident to the sex, of the 
strictest modesty, and secluded from public view in pavilions of hollow 
pearls, so large, that, as some traditions have it, one of them will be no 
less than four parasangs (or, as others say, sixty miles) long, and as many 
   The name which the Mohammedans usually give to this happy mansion, is al 
Jannat, or the garden; and sometimes they call it, with an addition, Jannat al 
Ferdaws, the garden of paradise, Jannet Aden, the garden of Eden (though they 
generally interpret the word Eden, not according to its acceptation in Hebrew, 
but according to its meaning in their

		1  Yahya, in Kor.c. 13.				2  Jallal'oddin, ibid.

own tongue, wherein it signifies a settled or perpetual habitation), Jannat al 
Mįwa, the garden of abode, Jannat al Naļm, the garden of pleasure, and the 
like; by which several appellations some understand so many different gardens, 
or at least places of different degrees of felicity (for they reckon no less 
than a hundred such in all), the very meanest whereof will afford its 
inhabitants so many pleasures and delights, that one would conclude they must 
even sink under them, had not Mohammed declared, that in order to qualify the 
blessed for a full enjoyment of them, GOD will give to every one the abilities 
of a hundred men.
   We have already described Mohammed's pond, whereof the righteous are to 
drink before their admission into this delicious seat; besides which some 
authors1 mention two fountains, springing from under a certain tree near the 
gate of paradise, and say, that the blessed will also drink of one of them, to 
purge their bodies and carry off all excrementitious dregs, and will wash 
themselves in the other.  When they are arrived at the gate itself, each 
person will there be met and saluted by the beautiful youths appointed to 
serve and wait upon him, one of them running before, to carry the news of his 
arrival to the wives destined for him; and also by two angels, bearing the 
presents sent him by GOD, one of whom will invest him with a garment of 
paradise, and the other will put a ring on each of his fingers, with 
inscriptions on them alluding to the happiness of his condition.  By which of 
the eight gates (for so many they suppose paradise to have) they are 
respectively to enter, is not worth inquiry; but it must be observed that 
Mohammed has declared that no person's good works will gain him admittance, 
and that even himself shall be saved, not by his merits, but merely by the 
mercy of GOD.  It is, however, the constant doctrine of the Korān, that the 
felicity of each person will be proportioned to this deserts, and that there 
will be abodes of different degrees of happiness; the most eminent degree 
being reserved for the prophets, the second for the doctors and teachers of 
God's worship, the next for the martyrs, and the lower for the rest of the 
righteous, according to their several merits.  There will also some 
distinction be made in respect to the time of their admission; Mohammed (to 
whom, if you will believe him, the gates will first be opened) having 
affirmed, that the poor will enter paradise five hundred years before the 
rich: nor is this the only privilege which they will enjoy in the next life; 
since the same prophet has also declared, that when he took a view of 
paradise, he saw the majority of its inhabitants to be the poor, and when he 
looked down into hell, he saw the greater part of the wretches confined there 
to be women.
   For the first entertainment of the blessed on their admission, they fable 
that the whole earth will then be as one loaf of bread, which GOD will reach 
to them with his hand, holding it like a cake; and that for meat they will 
have the ox Balām, and the fish Nūn, the lobs of whose livers will suffice 
70,000 men, being, as some imagine to be set before the principal guests, 
viz., those who, to that number, will be admitted into paradise without 
examination;2 though others suppose that a definite number is here put for an 
indefinite, and that

		1  Al Ghazāli, Kenz al Afrār				2  See before, p. 

nothing more is meant thereby, than to express a great multitude of people.
   From this feast every one will be dismissed to the mansion designed for 
him, where (as has been said) he will enjoy such a share of felicity as will 
be proportioned to his merits, but vastly exceed comprehension or expectation; 
since the very meanest in paradise (as he who, it is pretended, must know 
best, has declared) will have eighty thousand servants, seventy-two wives of 
the girls of paradise, besides the wives he had in this world, and a tent 
erected for him of pearls, jacinths, and emeralds, of a very large extent; 
and, according to another tradition, will be waited on by three hundred 
attendants while he eats, will be served in dishes of gold, whereof three 
hundred shall be set before him at once, containing each a different kind of 
food, the last morsel of which will be as grateful as the first; and will also 
be supplied with as many sorts of liquors in vessels of the same metal: and, 
to complete the entertainment, there will be no want of wine, which, though 
forbidden in this life, will yet be freely allowed to be drunk in the next, 
and without danger, since the wine of paradise will not inebriate, as that we 
drink here.  The flavour of this wine we may conceive to be delicious without 
a description, since the water of Tasnīm and the other fountains which will be 
used to dilute it, is said to be wonderfully sweet and fragrant.  If any 
object to these pleasures, as an impudent Jew did to Mohammed, that so much 
eating and drinking must necessarily require proper evacuations, we answer, as 
the prophets did, that the inhabitants of paradise will not need to ease 
themselves, nor even to blow their nose, for that all superfluities will be 
discharged and carried off by perspiration, or a sweat as odoriferous as musk, 
after which their appetite shall return afresh.
   The magnificence of the garments and furniture promised by the Korān to the 
godly in the next life, is answerable to the delicacy of their diet.  For they 
are to be clothed in the richest of silks and brocades, chiefly of green, 
which will burst forth from the fruits of paradise, and will be also supplied 
by the leaves of the tree Tūba; they will be adorned with bracelets of gold 
and silver, and crowns set with pearls of incomparable lustre; and will make 
use of silken carpets, litters of a prodigious size, couches, pillows, and 
other rich furniture embroidered with gold and precious stones.
   That we may the more readily believe what has been mentioned of the 
extraordinary abilities of the inhabitants of paradise to taste these 
pleasures in their height, it is said they will enjoy a perpetual youth; that 
in whatever age they happen to die, they will be raised in their prime and 
vigour, that is, of about thirty years of age, which age they will never 
exceed (and the same they say of the damned); and that when they enter 
paradise they will be of the same stature with Adam, who, as they fable, was 
no less than sixty cubits high.  And to this age and stature their children, 
if they shall desire any (for otherwise their wives will not conceive), shall 
immediately attain; according to that saying of their prophet, "If any of the 
faithful in paradise be desirous of issue, it shall be conceived, born, and 
grown up within the space of an hour."  And in the same manner, if any one 
shall have a fancy to employ himself in agriculture (which rustic pleasure may 

the wanton fancy of some), what he shall sow will spring up and come to 
maturity in a moment.
   Lest any of the senses should want their proper delight, we are told the 
ear will there be entertained, not only with the ravishing songs of the angel 
Israfīl, who has the most melodious voice of all GOD'S creatures, and of the 
daughters of paradise; but even the trees themselves will celebrate the divine 
praises with a harmony exceeding whatever mortals have heard; to which will be 
joined the sound of the bells hanging on the trees, which will be put in 
motion by the wind proceeding from the throne of GOD, so often as the blessed 
wish for music: nay, the very clashing of the golden-bodied trees, whose 
fruits are pearls and emeralds, will surpass human imagination; so that the 
pleasures of this sense will not be the least of the enjoyments of paradise.
   The delights we have hitherto taken a view of, it is said, will be common 
to all the inhabitants of paradise, even those of the lowest order.  What 
then, think we, must they enjoy who shall obtain a superior degree of honour 
and felicity?  To these, they say, there are prepared, besides all this, "such 
things as eye hath not seen, nor hath ear heard, nor hath it entered into the 
heart of man to conceive;" an expression most certainly borrowed from 
scripture.1  That we may know wherein the felicity of those who shall attain 
the highest degree will consist, Mohammed is reported to have said, that the 
meanest of the inhabitants of paradise will see his gardens, wives, servants, 
furniture, and other possessions take up the space of a thousand years' 
journey (for so far and farther will the blessed see in the next life); but 
that he will be in the highest honour with GOD, who shall behold his face 
morning and evening: and this favour al Ghazāli supposes to be that additional 
or superabundant recompense, promised in the Korān,2 which will give such 
exquisite delight, that in respect thereof all the other pleasures of paradise 
will be forgotten and lightly esteemed; and not without reason, since, as the 
same author says, every other enjoyment is equally tasted by the very brute 
beast who is turned loose into luxuriant pasture.3  The reader will observe, 
by the way, that this is a full confutation of those who pretend that the 
Mohammedans admit of no spiritual pleasure in the next life, but make the 
happiness of the blessed to consist wholly in corporeal enjoyments.4
   Whence Mohammed took the greatest part of his paradise it is easy to show.  
The Jews constantly describe the future mansion of the just as a delicious 
garden, and make it also reach to the seventh heaven.5  They also say it has 
three gates,6 or, as others will have it, two,7 and four rivers (which last 
circumstance they copied, to be sure, from those of the garden of Eden8), 
flowing with milk, wine, balsam, and honey.1  Their Behemoth and Leviathan, 
which they pretend will be slain for the entertainment of the blessed,2 are so 
apparently the Balām and Nūn of Mohammed, that his followers themselves 
confess he is obliged to them for both.3  The Rabbins likewise mention seven 

   1  Isaiah lxiv. 4; I Cor. ii. 9.		2  Cap. 10, &c.		3  Vide Poc. 
in not. ad Port. Mosis, p. 305.
4  Vide Reland, de Rel. Moh. l. 2, § 17.		5  Vide Gemar. Tānith, f. 25, 
Beracoth, f. 34, and Midrash sabboth, f. 37.
6  Megillah, Amkoth, p. 78.			7  Midrash, Yalkut Shemuni.	
	8  Gen. ii. 10, &c.
1  Midrash, Yalk. Shem.		2  Gemar. Bava Bathra. f. 78; Rashi, in Job i.	
	3  Vide Poc. not. in Port. Mosis, p. 298.

degrees of felicity,4 and say that the highest will be of those who 
perpetually contemplate the face of GOD.5  The Persian Magi had also an idea 
of the future happy estate of the good, very little different from that of 
Mohammed.  Paradise they called Behisht, and Mīnu, which signifies crystal, 
where they believe the righteous shall enjoy all manner of delights, and 
particularly the company of the Hurāni behisht, or black-eyed nymphs of 
paradise,6 the care of whom, they say, committed to the angel Zamiyād;7 and 
hence Mohammed seems to have taken the first hint of his paradisiacal ladies.
   It is not improbable, however, but that he might have been obliged, in some 
respect, to the Christian accounts of the felicity of the good in the next 
life.  As it is scarce possible to convey, especially to the apprehensions of 
the generality of mankind, an idea of spiritual pleasures without introducing 
sensible objects, the scriptures have been obliged to represent the celestial 
enjoyments by corporeal images; and to describe the mansion of the blessed as 
a glorious and magnificent city, built of gold and precious stones, with 
twelve gates; through the streets of which there runs a river of water of 
life, and having on either side the tree of life, which bears twelve sorts of 
fruits, and leaves of a healing virtue.8  Our Saviour likewise speaks of the 
future state of the blessed as of a kingdom where they shall eat and drink at 
his table.9  But then these descriptions have none of those puerile 
imaginations10 which reign throughout that of Mohammed, much less any the most 
distant intimation of sensual delights, which he was so fond of; on the 
contrary, we are expressly assured, that "in the resurrection they will 
neither marry nor be given in marriage, but will be as the angels of GOD in 
heaven."11  Mohammed, however, to enhance the value of paradise with his 
Arabians, chose rather to imitate the indecency of the Magians than the 
modesty of the Christians in this particular, and lest his beatified Moslems 
should complain that anything was wanting, bestows on them wives, as well as 
the other comforts of life; judging, it is to be presumed, from his own 
inclinations, that like Panurgus's ass,1 they would think all the other 
enjoyments not worth their acceptance if they were to be debarred from this.
   Had Mohammed, after all, intimated to his followers, that what he had told 
them of paradise was to be taken, not literally, but in a metaphorical sense 
(as it is said the Magians do the description of Zoroaster's2), this might, 
perhaps make some atonement; but the contrary is so evident from the whole 
tenour of the Korān, that although some

   4  Nishmat hayim, f. 32.		5  Midrash, Tehillim, fl. II.		6  
Sadder, porta 5.		7 Hyde, de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 265.		8  Rev. xxi. 
10, &c., and xxii. I, 2.		9  Luke xxii. 29, 30, &c.
10  I would not, however, undertake to defend all the Christian writers in 
this particular; witness that one passage of Irenęus, wherein he introduces a 
tradition of St. John that our LORD should say, "The days shall come, in which 
there shall be vines, which shall have each ten thousand branches, and every 
of those branches shall have ten thousand lesser branches, and every of these 
branches shall have ten thousand twigs, and every one of these twigs shall 
have ten thousand clusters of grapes, and in every one of these clusters there 
shall be ten thousand grapes, and every one of these grapes being pressed 
shall yield two hundred and seventy-five gallons of wine; and when a man shall 
take hold of one of these sacred bunches, another bunch shall cry out, I am a 
better bunch: take me, and bless the LORD by me," &c.  Iren. l. 5, c. 33.	
	11  Matth. xxii. 30.		1  Vide Rabelais, Pantagr. l. 5, c. 7.  A 
better authority than this might, however, be alleged in favour of Mohammed's 
judgment in this respect; I mean that of Plato, who is said to have proposed, 
in his ideal commonwealth, as the reward of valiant men and consummate 
soldiers, the kisses of boys and beauteous damsels.  Vide Gell. Noct. Att. l. 
18, c. 2.		2  Vide Hyde. de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 266.

Mohammedans, whose understandings are too refined to admit such gross 
conceptions, look on their prophet's descriptions as parabolical, and are 
willing to receive them in an allegorical or spiritual acceptation,3 yet the 
general and orthodox doctrine is, that the whole is to be strictly believed in 
the obvious and literal acceptation; to prove which I need only urge the oath 
they exact from Christians (who they know abhor such fancies) when they would 
bind them in the most strong and sacred manner; for in such a case they make 
them swear that if they falsify their engagement, they will affirm that there 
will be black-eyed girls in the next world, and corporeal pleasures.4
   Before we quite this subject it may not be improper to observe the 
falsehood of a vulgar imputation on the Mohammedans, who are by several 
writers5 reported to hold that women have no souls, or, if they have, that 
they will perish, like those of brute beasts, and will not be rewarded in the 
next life.  But whatever may be the opinion of some ignorant people among 
them, it is certain that Mohammed had too great a respect for the fair sex to 
teach such a doctrine; and there are several passages in the Korān which 
affirm that women, in the next life, will not only be punished for their evil 
actions, but will also receive the rewards of their good deeds, as well as the 
men, and that in this case GOD will make no distinction of sexes.6  It is 
true, the general notion is, that they will not be admitted into the same 
abode as the men are, because their places will be supplied by the 
paradisiacal females (though some allow that a man will there also have the 
company of those who were his wives in this world, or at least such of them as 
he shall desire1); but that good women will go into a separate place of 
happiness, where they will enjoy all sorts of delights;2 but whether one of 
those delights will be the enjoyment of agreeable paramours created for them, 
to complete the economy of the Mohammedan system, is what I have nowhere found 
decided.  One circumstance relating to these beatified females, conformable to 
what he had asserted of the men, he acquainted his followers with in the 
answer he returned to an old woman, who, desiring him to intercede with GOD 
that she might be admitted into paradise, he told her that no old woman would 
enter that place; which setting the poor woman a-crying, he explained himself 
by saying that GOD would then make her young again.3
   The sixth great point of faith, which the Mohammedans are taught by the 
Korān to believe, is GOD'S absolute decree, and predestination both of good 
and evil.  For the orthodox doctrine is, that whether it be bad, proceedeth 
entirely from the divine will, and is irrevocably fixed and recorded from all 
eternity in the preserved table;4 GOD having secretly predetermined not only 
the adverse and prosperous fortune of every person in this world, in the most 
minute particulars, but also his faith or infidelity, his obedience or 
disobedience, and con

   3  Vide Eund. in not. ad Bobov. Lit. Turcar. p. 21.		4  Poc. ad 
Port. Mos. P. 305.			5  Hornbek, Sum. Contr. p. 16.  Grelot, 
Voyage de Constant. p. 275.  Ricaut's Present State of the Ottoman Empire, l. 
2, c. 21.
6  See Kor. c. 3, p. 52, c. 4, p. 67; and also c. 13, 16, 40, 48, 57, &c.  
Vide etiam Reland. de Rel. Moh. l. 2, § 18; and Hyde, in not. ad Bobov. de 
Visit. ęgr. p. 21.		1  See before, p. 77.		2  Vide Chardin, 
Voy. tom. ii. p. 328, and Bayle, Dict. Hist. Art. Mahomet, Rem. Q.	
	3  See Kor. c. 56, and the notes there; and Gagnier. not. in Abulfeda 
Vit. Moh p. 145.	
4  See before, p. 50.

sequently his everlasting happiness or misery after death; which fate or 
predestination it is not possible, by any foresight or wisdom, to avoid.
   Of this doctrine Mohammed makes great use in his Korān for the advancement 
of his designs; encouraging his followers to fight without fear, and even 
desperately, for the propagation of their faith, by representing to them that 
all their caution could not avert their inevitable destiny, or prolong their 
lives for a moment;5 and deterring them from disobeying or rejecting him as an 
impostor, by setting before them the danger they might thereby incur of being, 
by the just judgment of GOD, abandoned to seduction, hardness of heart, and a 
reprobate mind, as a punishment for their obstinacy.6
   As this doctrine of absolute election and reprobation has been thought by 
many of the Mohammedan divines to be derogatory to the goodness and justice of 
GOD, and to make GOD the author of evil, several subtle distinctions have been 
invented, and disputes raised, to explicate or soften it; and different sects 
have been formed, according to their several opinions or methods of explaining 
this point: some of them going so far as even to hold the direct contrary 
position of absolute free will in man, as we shall see hereafter.1
   Of the four fundamental points of religious practice required by the Korān, 
the first is prayer, under which, as has been said, are also comprehended 
those legal washings or purifications which are necessary preparations 
   Of these purifications there are two degrees, one called Ghosl, being a 
total immersion or bathing of the body in water; and the other called Wodū (by 
the Persians, Abdest), which is the washing of their faces, hands, and feet, 
after a certain manner.  The first is required in some extraordinary cases 
only, as after having lain with a woman, or been polluted by emission of seed, 
or by approaching a dead body; women also being obliged to it after their 
courses or childbirth.  The latter is the ordinary ablution in common cases 
and before prayer, and must necessarily be used by every person before he can 
enter upon that duty.2  It is performed with certain formal ceremonies, which 
have been described by some writers, but are much easier apprehended by seeing 
them done than by the best description.
   These purifications were perhaps borrowed by Mohammed of the Jews; at least 
they agree in a great measure with those used by that nation,3 who in process 
of time burdened the precepts of Moses in this point, with so many 
traditionary ceremonies, that whole books have been written about them, and 
who were so exact and superstitious therein, even in our Saviour's time, that 
they are often reproved by him for it.4  But as it is certain that the pagan 
Arabs used lustrations of this kind5 long before the time of Mohammed, as most 
nations did, and still do in the east, where the warmth of the climate 
requires a greater nicety and degree of cleanliness than these colder parts; 
perhaps Mohammed only recalled his countrymen to a more strict observance of 
those purifying rites, which had been probably neglected by them, or at least 
performed in a careless and perfunctory manner.

   5  Kor. c. 3, c. 4, &c.		6  Ibid. c. 4, c. 2, &c. passim.	
	1  Sect. VIII.		2  Kor. c. 4, and c. 5 Vide Reland. de Rel. Moh. 
l. i., c. 8.		3  Poc. not in Port. Mosis, p. 356, &c.		4  
Mark vii. 3, &c.	
5  Vide Herodot. l. 3, c. 198.

The Mohammedans, however, will have it that they are as ancient as Abraham,1 
who, they say, was enjoined by GOD to observe them, and was shown the manner 
of making the ablution by the angel Gabriel, in the form of a beautiful 
youth.2  Nay, some deduce the matter higher, and imagine that these ceremonies 
were taught our first parents by the angels.3
   That his followers might be the more punctual in this duty, Mohammed is 
said to have declared, that "the practice of religion is founded on 
cleanliness," which is the one-half of the faith, and the key of prayer, 
without which it will not be heard by GOD.4  That these expressions may be the 
better understood, al Ghazāli reckons four degrees of purification; of which 
the first is, the cleansing of the body from all pollution, filth, and 
excrements; the second, the cleansing of the members of the body from all 
wickedness and unjust actions; the third, the cleansing of the heart from all 
blamable inclinations and odious vices; and the fourth, the purging a man's 
secret thoughts from all affections which may divert their attendance on GOD: 
adding, that the body is but as the outward shell in respect to the heart, 
which is as the kernel.  And for this reason he highly complains of those who 
are superstitiously solicitous in exterior purifications, avoiding those 
persons as unclean who are not so scrupulously nice as themselves, and at the 
same time have their minds lying waste, and overrun with pride, ignorance, and 
hypocrisy.5  Whence it plainly appears with how little foundation the 
Mohammedans have been charged, by some writers,6 with teaching or imagining 
that these formal washings alone cleanse them for their sins.7
   Lest so necessary a preparation to their devotions should be omitted, 
either where water cannot be had, or when it may be of prejudice to a person's 
health, they are allowed in such cases to make use of fine sand or dust in 
lieu of it;8 and then they perform this duty by clapping their open hands on 
the sand, and passing them over the parts, in the same manner as if they were 
dipped in water.  But for this expedient Mohammed was not so much indebted to 
his own cunning,1 as to the example of the Jews, or perhaps that of the 
Persian Magi, almost as scrupulous as the Jews themselves in their 
lustrations, who both of them prescribe the same method in cases of 
necessity;2 and there is a famous instance, in ecclesiastical history, of sand 
being used, for the same reason, instead of water, in the administration of 
the Christian sacrament of baptism, many years before Mohammed's time.3
   Neither are the Mohammedans contented with bare washing, but

   1  Al Jannābi in Vita Abrah.  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 303.
   2  Herewith agrees the spurious Gospel of St. Barnabas, the Spanish 
translation of which (cap. 29) has these words: Dixo Abraham, Que harč yo para 
servir al Dios de los sanctos y prophetas?  Respondiņ el angel, Ve e aquella 
fuente y lavate, porque Dios quiere hablar contigo.  Dixo Abraham, Come tengo 
de lavarme?  Luego el angel se le appareciņ como uno bello mancebo, y se lavņ 
en la fuente, y le dixo, Abraham, haz como yo.  Y Abraham se lavņ, &c.
   3  Al Kessāļ.  Vide Reland. de Rel. Mohamm. p. 81.		4  Al Ghazāli, Ebn 
al Athīr.		5  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 302, &c.	
6  Barthol. Edessen, Confut. Hagaren. p. 360.  G. Sionita and J. Hesronita, in 
Tract. de Urb. and Morib. Orient. ad Calcem Geogr. Nubiens. c. 15.  Du Ryer, 
dans le Sommaire de la Rel. des Turcs, mis ą la tźte de sa version de l'Alcor.  
St. Olon, Descr. du Royaume de Maroc, c. 2.  Hyde, in not. ad Bobov. de Prec. 
Moh. p. I; Smith, de Morib. et Instit. Turcar. Ep. I, p. 32.		7  
Vide Reland. de Rel. Moh. l. 2, c. II.		8  Kor. c. 3, p. 59 and 5, p. 
74.		1  Vide Smith, ubi sup.		2  Gemar.  Berachoth. c 2. Vide Poc. 
not. ad Port Mosis, p. 380.  Sadder, porta 84.		3  Cedren. p. 250.

think themselves obliged to several other necessary points of cleanliness, 
which they make also parts of this duty; such as combing the hair, cutting the 
beard, paring the nails, pulling out the hairs of their armpits, shaving their 
private parts, and circumcision;4 of which last I will add a word or two, lest 
I should not find a more proper place.
   Circumcision, though it be not so much as once mentioned in the Korān, is 
yet held by the Mohammedans to be an ancient divine institution, confirmed by 
the religion of Islām, and though not so absolutely necessary but that it may 
be dispensed with in some cases,5 yet highly proper and expedient.  The Arabs 
used this rite for many ages before Mohammed, having probably learned it from 
Ismael, though not only his descendants, but the Hamyarites,6 and other 
tribes, practised the same.  The Ismaelites, we are told,7 used to circumcise 
their children, not on the eighth day, as is the custom of the Jews, but when 
about twelve or thirteen years old, at which age their father underwent that 
operation:8 and the Mohammedans imitate them so far as not to circumcise 
children before they be able, at least, distinctly to pronounce that 
profession of their faith, "There is no GOD but GOD, Mohammed is the apostle 
of GOD;"9 but pitch on what age they please for the purpose, between six and 
sixteen or thereabouts.10  Though the Moslem doctors are generally of opinion, 
conformably to the scripture, that this precept was originally given to 
Abraham, yet some have imagined that Adam was taught it by the angel Gabriel, 
to satisfy an oath he had made to cut off that flesh which, after his fall, 
had rebelled against his spirit; whence an odd argument has been drawn for the 
universal obligation of circumcision.1  Though I cannot say the Jews led the 
Mohammedans the way here, yet they seem so unwilling to believe any of the 
principal patriarchs or prophets before Abraham were really uncircumcised, 
that they pretend several of them, as well as some holy men who lived after 
his time, were born ready circumcised, or without a foreskin, and that Adam, 
in particular, was so created;2 whence the Mohammedans affirm the same thing 
of their prophet.3
   Prayer was by Mohammed thought so necessary a duty, that he used to call it 
the pillar of religion and the key of paradise; and when the Thakifites, who 
dwelt at Tāyef, sending in the ninth year of the Hejra to make their 
submission to that prophet, after the keeping of their favourite idol had been 
denied them,4 begged, at least, that they might be dispensed with as to their 
saying of the appointed prayers, he answered, "That there could be no good in 
that religion wherein was no prayer."5

   4  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 303.		5  Vide Bobov. de Circumcis. p. 22.		
	6  Philostorg. Hist. Eccl. l. 3.
7  Joseph. Ant. l. I, c. 23.		8  Gen. xvii. 25.		9  Vide Bobov. ubi 
sup. and Poc. Spec. p. 319.	
10  Vide Reland. de Rel. Moh. l. I, p. 75.
   1  This is the substance of the following passage of the Gospel of Barnabas 
(cap. 23), viz.,Entonces dixo Jesus; Adam el primer hombre aviendo comido por 
eńgano del demonio la comida prohibida por Dios en el parayso, se le rebelņ su 
carne ą su espiritu; por lo qual jurņ diziendo, Por Dios que yo te quiero 
cortar; y rompiendo una piedra tomņ su carne para cortarla con el corte de la 
piedra.  Por loqual fue reprehendido del angel Gabriel, y el le dixo; Yo he 
jurado por Dios que lo he de cortar, y mentiroso no lo serč jamas.  Ala hora 
el angel le enseńo la superfluidad de su earne, y a quella cortņ.  De manera 
que ansi como todo hombre toma carne de Adam, ansi esta obligado a complir 
aquello que Adam con juramento prometiņ. 		2  Shalshel. hakkabala.  Vide 
Poc. Spec. p. 320; Gagnier not. in Abulfed. Vit. Moh. p. 2.		3  Vide Poc. 
Spec. p. 304.		4  See before, p. 14.		5  Abulfed. Vit. Moh. p. 

   That so important a duty, therefore, might not be neglected, Mohammed 
obliged his followers to pray five times every twenty-four hours, at certain 
state times; viz., I.  In the morning, before sunrise; 2.  When noon is past, 
and the sun begins to decline form the meridian; 3.  In the afternoon, before 
sunset; 4.  In the evening, after sunset, and before day be shut in; and 5.  
After the day is shut in, and before the first watch of the night.6  For this 
institution he pretended to have received the divine command from the throne 
of GOD himself, when he took his night journey to heaven; and the observing of 
the stated times of prayer is frequently insisted on in the Korān, though they 
be not particularly prescribed therein.  Accordingly, at the aforesaid times, 
of which public notice is given by the Muedhdhins, or Criers, from the 
steeples of their mosques (for they use no bell), every conscientious Moslem 
prepares himself for prayer, which he performs either in the mosque or any 
other place, provided it be clean, after a prescribed form, and with a certain 
number of phrases or ejaculations (which the more scrupulous count by a string 
of beads) and using certain postures of worship; all which have been 
particularly set down and described, though with some few mistakes, by other 
writers,1 and ought not to be abridged, unless in some special cases; as on a 
journey, on preparing for battle, &c.
   For the regular performance of the duty of prayer among the Mohammedans, 
besides the particulars above mentioned, it is also requisite that they turn 
their faces, while they pray, towards the temple of Mecca;2 the quarter where 
the same is situate being, for that reason, pointed out within their mosques 
by a niche, which they call al Mehrāb, and without, by the situation of the 
doors opening into the galleries of the steeples: there are also tables 
calculated for the ready finding out their Kebla, or part towards which they 
ought to pray, in places where they have no other direction.3
   But what is principally to be regarded in the discharge of this duty, say 
the Moslem doctors, is the inward disposition of the heart, which is the life 
and spirit of prayer;4 the most punctual observance of the external rites and 
ceremonies before mentioned being of little or no avail, if performed without 
due attention, reverence, devotion, and hope:5 so that we must not think the 
Mohammedans, or the considerate part of them at least, content themselves with 
the mere opu. operatum, or imagine their whole religion to be placed therein.6
   I had like to have omitted two things which in my mind deserve mention on 
this head, and may, perhaps, be better defended than our contrary practice.  
One is, that the Mohammedans never address themselves to GOD in sumptuous 
apparel, though they are obliged to be decently clothed; but lay aside their 
costly habits and pompous ornaments, if they wear any, when they approach the 
divine presence, lest they should seem proud and arrogant.7  The other is, 
that they admit not their women to pray with them in public; that sex being

   6  Vide Ibid. p. 38, 39.		1  Vide Hotting. Hist. Eccles. tom. viii. 
p. 470-529; Bobov. in Liturg. Turcic p. I, &c.; Grelot, Voyage de Constant. p. 
253-264; Chardin, Voy. de Perse, tom. ii. p. 388, &c.; and Smith, de Moribus 
ac Instit. Turcar. Ep. I, p. 33, &c.
2  Kor. c. 2, p. 16.  See the notes there.		3  Vide Hyde, de Rel. 
Vet. Pers. p. 8, 9, and 126.		4  Al Ghazāli.
5  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 305.		6  Vide Smith, ubi sup. p. 40.	
	7  Reland. de Rel. Moh. p. 96.  See Kor. c.7. p. 107.

obliged to perform their devotions at home, or if they visit the mosques, it 
must be at a time when the men are not there: for the Moslems are of opinion 
that their presence inspires a different kind of devotion from that which is 
requisite in a place dedicated to the worship of GOD.8
   The greater part of the particulars comprised in the Mohammedan institution 
of prayer, their prophet seems to have copied from others, and especially the 
Jews; exceeding their institutions only in the number of daily prayer.1  The 
Jews are directed to pray three times a day,2 in the morning, in the evening, 
and within night; in imitation of Abraham,3 Isaac,4 and Jacob;5 and the 
practice was as early, at least, as the time of Daniel.6  The several postures 
used by the Mohammedans in their prayers are also the same with those 
prescribed by the Jewish Rabbins, and particularly the most solemn act of 
adoration, by prostrating themselves so as to touch the ground with their 
forehead;7 notwithstanding, the latter pretend the practice of the former, in 
this respect, to be a relic of their ancient manner of paying their devotions 
to Baal-Peor.8  The Jews likewise constantly pray with their faces turned 
towards the temple of Jerusalem,9 which has been their Kebla from the time it 
was first dedicated by Solomon;10 for which reason Daniel, praying in Chaldea, 
had the windows of his chamber open towards that city:11 and the same was the 
Kebla of Mohammed and his followers for six or seven months,12 and till he 
found himself obliged to change it for the Caaba.  The Jews, moreover, are 
obliged by the precepts of their religion to be careful that the place they 
pray in, and the garments they have on when they perform their duty, be 
clean:13 the men and women also among them pray apart (in which particular 
they were imitated by the eastern Christians); and several other conformities 
might be remarked between the Jewish public worship and that of the 
   The next point of the Mohammedan religion is the giving of alms, which are 
of two sorts, legal and voluntary.  The legal alms are of indispensable 
obligation, being commanded by the law, which directs and determines both the 
portion which is to be given, and of what things it ought to be given; but the 
voluntary alms are left to every one's liberty, to give more or less, as he 
shall see fit.  The former kind of alms some think to be properly called 
Zacāt, and the latter Sadakat;

   8  A Moor, named Ahmed Ebn Abdalla, in a Latin epistle by him, written to 
Maurice, Prince of Orange, and Emanuel, Prince of Portugal, containing a 
censure of the Christian religion (a copy of which, once belonging to Mr. 
Selden, who has thence transcribed a considerable passage in his treatise De 
Synedriis vett. Ebręor. l. I, c. 12, is now in the Bodleian Library), finds 
great fault with the unedifying manner in which mass is said among the Roman 
Catholics, for this very reason, among others.  His words are: Ubicunque 
congregantur simul viri et fomino, ibi mens non est intenta et devota: nam 
inter celebrandum missam et sacrificia, fomino et viri mutuis aspectibus, 
signis, ac nutibus accendunt pravorum appetitum, et desideriorum suorum ignes: 
et quando hoc non fieret, saltem humana fragilitas delectatur mutuo et 
reciproco aspectu; et ita non potest esse mens quieta, attenta, et devota.
    1  The Sabians, according to some, exceed the Mohammedans in this point, 
praying seven times a day.  See before, p. 11.	
2  Gemar. Berachoth.		3  Gen. xix. 27.		4  Gen. xxiv. 63.	
	5  Gen. xxviii. II, &c.	
6  Dan. vi. 10.		7  Vide Millium, de Mohammedismo ante Moham. p. 427, 
&c., and Hyde, de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 5, &c.
8  Maimonid. in Epist. ad Proselyt. Relig. Vide Poc. Spec. p. 306.	
	9  Gemar. Bava Bathra, and Berachoth.	
10  I Kings viii. 29, &c.		11  Dan. vi. 10.		12  Some say 
eighteen months.  Vide Abulfed. Vit. Moh. p. 54.
13  Maimon. in Halachoth Tephilla, c.9, § 8, 9.  Menura hammeor, fol. 28, 2.	
	14  Vide Millium, ubi supra, p. 424, et seq.

though this name be also frequently given to the legal alms.  They are called 
Zacāt, either because they increase a man's store, by drawing down a blessing 
thereon, and produce in his soul the virtue of liberality,1 or because they 
purify the remaining part of one's substance from pollution, and the soul from 
the filth of avarice;2 and Sadakat, because they are a proof of a man's 
sincerity in the worship of GOD.  Some writers have called the legal alms 
tithes, but improperly, since in some cases they fall short, and in others 
exceed that proportion.
   The giving of alms is frequently commanded in the Korān, and often 
recommended therein jointly with prayer; the former being held of great 
efficacy in causing the latter to be heard of GOD: for which reason the Khalīf 
Omar Ebn Abd'alaziz used to say, "that prayer and alms carries us half-way to 
GOD, fasting brings us to the door of his palace, and alms procures us 
admission."3  The Mohammedans, therefore, esteem almsdeeds to be highly 
meritorious, and many of them have been illustrious for the exercise thereof.  
Hasan, the son of Ali, and grandson of Mohammed, in particular is related to 
have thrice in his life divided his substance equally between himself and the 
poor, and twice to have given away all he had:4 and the generality are so 
addicted to the doing of good, that they extend their charity even to brutes.5
   Alms, according to the prescriptions of the Mohammedan law, are to be given 
of five things-I.  Of cattle, that is to say, of camels, kine, and sheep.  2. 
Of money.  3. Of corn.  4. Of fruits, viz., dates and raisins. And 5. Of wares 
sold.  Of each of these a certain portion is to be given in alms, usually one 
part in forty, or two and a half per cent of the value.  But no alms are due 
for them, unless they amount to a certain quantity or number; nor until a man 
has been in possession of them eleven months, he not being obliged to give 
alms thereout before the twelfth month is begun: nor are alms due for cattle 
employed in tilling the ground, or in carrying of burdens.  In some cases a 
much larger portion than the before-mentioned is reckoned due for alms: thus 
of what is gotten out of mines, or the sea, or by any art or profession over 
and above what is sufficient for the reasonable support of a man's family, and 
especially where there is a mixture or suspicion of unjust gain, a fifth part 
ought to be given in alms.  Moreover, at the end of the fast of Ramadān, every 
Moslem is obliged to give in alms for himself and for every one of his family, 
if he has any, a measure1 of wheat, barley, dates, raisins, rice, or other 
provisions commonly eaten.2
   The legal alms were at first collected by Mohammed himself, who employed 
them as he thought fit, in the relief of his poor relations and followers, but 
chiefly applied them to the maintenance of those who served in his wars, and 
fought, as he termed it, in the way of GOD.  His successors continued to do 
the same, till, in the process of time, other taxes and tributes being imposed 
for the support of the government,

   1  Al Beidāwi.  See Kor. c. 2, p. 29.		2  Idem.  Compare this with 
what our Saviour says (Luke xi. 41), "Give alms of such things as ye have; and 
behold, all things are clean unto you."			3  D'Herbel. Bibl. 
Orient. p. 5.		4  Ibid. p. 422.		5  Vide Busbeq. Epist. 3, p. 
178.  Smith, de Morib. Turc. Ep. I, p. 66, &c.  Compare Eccles. xi. I. and 
Prov. xii. 10.
1  This measure is a Saį, and contains about six or seven pounds weight.	
	2  Vide Reland. de Rel. Mahommed. lib. i., p. 99, &c.  Chardin, Voy. de 
Perse. tom. 2, p. 415, &c.

they seem to have been weary of acting as almoners to their subjects, and to 
have left the paying them to their consciences.
   In the foregoing rules concerning alms, we may observe also footsteps of 
what the Jews taught and practised in respect thereto.  Alms, which they also 
call Sedaka, i.e., justice, or righteousness,3 are greatly recommended by 
their Rabbins, and preferred even to sacrifices;4 as a duty, the frequent 
exercise whereof will effectually free a man from hell fire,5 and merit 
everlasting life:6 wherefore, besides the corners of the field, and the 
gleanings of their harvest and vineyard, commanded to be left for the poor and 
the stranger by the law of Moses,7 a certain portion of their corn and fruits 
is directed to be set apart for their relief, which portion is called the 
tithes of the poor.8  The Jews likewise were formerly very conspicuous for 
their charity.  Zaccheus gave the half of his goods to the poor;9 and we are 
told that some gave their whole substance: so that their doctors, at length, 
decreed that no man should give above a fifth part of his goods in alms.10  
There were also persons publicly appointed in every synagogue to collect and 
distribute the people's contributions.11
   The third point of religious practice is fasting; a duty of so great 
moment, that Mohammed used to say it was "the gate of religion," and that "the 
odour of the mouth of him who fasteth is more grateful to GOD than that of 
musk;" and al Ghazāli reckons fasting one-fourth part of the faith.  According 
to the Mohammedan divines, there are three degrees of fasting: I. The 
restraining the belly and other parts of the body from satisfying their lusts; 
2. The restraining the ears, eyes, tongue, hands, feet, and other members from 
sin; and 3. The fasting of the heart from worldly cares, and refraining the 
thoughts from everything besides GOD.1
   The Mohammedans are obliged, by the express command of the Korān, to fast 
the whole month of Ramadān, from the time the new moon first appears, till the 
appearance of the next new moon; during which time they must abstain from 
eating, drinking, and women, from daybreak till night,2 or sunset.  And this 
injunction they observe so strictly, that while they fast they suffer nothing 
to enter their mouths, or other parts of their body, esteeming the fast broken 
and null if they smell perfumes, take a clyster or injection, bathe, or even 
purposely swallow their spittle; some being so cautious that they will not 
open their mouths to speak, lest they should breathe the air too freely:3 the 
fast is also deemed void if a man kiss or touch a woman, or if he vomit 
designedly.  But after sunset they are allowed to refresh themselves, and to 
eat and drink, and enjoy the company of their wives till daybreak;4

   3  Hence alms are in the New Testament termed [Greek text]. Matth. vi. I 
(Ed. Steph.), and 2 Cor. ix. 10.		4  Gemar. in Bava Bathra.	
	5  Ibid. in Gittin.		6  Ibid. in Rosh hashana.		7  
Levit. xix. 9, 10; Deut. xxiv. 19, &c.		8  Vide Gemar. Hierosol. in 
Peah, and Maimon. in Halachoth matanoth Aniyyim. c.6.  Confer Pirke Avoth, v. 
9  Luke xix. 8.		10  Vide Reland. Ant. Sacr. Vet. Hebr. p. 402.	
	11  Vide Ibid. p. 138.	
1  Al Ghazāli, Al Mostatraf.		2  Kor. c. 2, p. 19, 20.	3  Hence we 
read that the Virgin Mary, to avoid answering the reflections cast on her for 
bringing home a child, was advised by the angel Gabriel to feign she had vowed 
a fast, and therefore she ought not to speak.  See Kor. c. 19.
   4  The words of the Korān (cap. 2, p. 20) are: "Until ye can distinguish a 
white thread from a black thread by the daybreak"-a form of speaking borrowed 
by Mohammed from the Jews, who determine the time when they are to begin their 
morning lesson, to be so soon as a man can discern blue form white, i.e., the 
blue threads from the white threads in the fringes of their garments.  But 
this explication the commentators do not approve, pretending that by the white

though the more rigid begin the fast again at midnight.5  This fast is 
extremely rigorous and mortifying when the month of Ramadān happens to fall in 
summer, for the Arabian year being lunar,6 each month runs through all the 
different seasons in the course of thirty-three years, the length and heat of 
the days making the observance of it much more difficult and uneasy then than 
in winter.
   The reason given why the month of Ramadān was pitched on for this purpose 
is, that on the month the Korān was sent down from heaven.1  Some pretend that 
Abraham, Moses, and Jesus received their respective revelations in the same 
   From the fast of Ramadān none are excused, except only travellers and sick 
persons (under which last denomination the doctors comprehend all whose health 
would manifestly be injured by their keeping the fast; as women with child and 
giving suck, ancient people, and young children); but then they are obliged, 
as soon as the impediment is removed, to fast an equal number of other days: 
and the breaking the fast is ordered to be expiated by giving alms to the 
   Mohammed seems to have followed the guidance of the Jews in his ordinances 
concerning fasting, no less than in the former particulars.  That nation, when 
they fast, abstain not only from eating and drinking, but from women, and from 
anointing themselves,4 from daybreak until sunset, and the stars begin to 
appear;5 spending the night in taking what refreshments they please.6  And 
they allow women with child and giving suck, old persons, and young children 
to be exempted from keeping most of the public fasts.7
   Though my design here be briefly to treat of those points only which are of 
indispensable obligation on a Moslem, and expressly required by the Korān, 
without entering into their practice as to voluntary and supererogatory works; 
yet to show how closely Mohammed's institutions follow the Jewish, I shall add 
a word or two of the voluntary fasts of the Mohammedans.  These are such as 
have been recommended either by the example or approbation of their prophet; 
and especially certain days of those months which they esteem sacred: there 
being a tradition that he used to say, That a fast of one day in a sacred 
month was better than a fast of thirty days in another month; and that the 
fast of one day in Ramadān was more meritorious than a fast of thirty days in 
a sacred month.8  Among the more commendable days is that of Ashūra, the tenth 
of Moharram; which, though some writers tell us it was observed by the Arabs, 
and particularly the tribe of Koreish, before Mohammed's time,9 yet, as others 
assure us, that prophet borrowed both the name and the fast from the Jews; it 
being with them the tenth of

thread and the black thread are to be understood the light and dark streaks of 
the daybreak; and they say the passage was at first revealed without the words 
"of the daybreak;" but Mohammed's followers, taking the expression in the 
first sense, regulated their practice accordingly, and continued eating and 
drinking till they could distinguish a white thread from a black thread, as 
they lay before them-to prevent which for the future, the words "of the 
daybreak" were added as explanatory of the former.  Al Beidāwi.  Vide Pocock. 
not. in Carmen Tograi, p. 89, &c.  Chardin, Voy. de Perse, tom. 2, p. 423.
   5  Vide Chardin, ib. p. 421, &c.  Reland. de Relig. Moh. p. 109, &c.	
	6  See hereafter, Sect. VI.		1  Kor. c. 2, p. 19.  See also c. 
97.		2  Al Beidāwi, ex Trad. Mohammedis.		3  See Kor. c. 2, p. 20.
4  Siphra, f. 252, 2.		5  Tosephoth ad Gemar. Yoma, f. 34.		6  
Vide Gemar. Yoma, f. 40, and maimon. in Halachoth Tįnioth, c. 5, § 5.	
	7  Vide Gemar. Tįnith, f. 12, and Yoma, f. 83, and Es Hayim, Tįnith, c. 
I.		8  Al Ghazāli.		9  Al Bārezi in Comment. ad Orat. Ebn 

the seventh month, or Tisri, and the great day of expiation commanded to be 
kept by the law of Moses.1  Al Kazwīni relates that when Mohammed came to 
Medina, and found the Jews there fasted on the day of Ashūra, he asked them 
the reason of it; and they told him it was because on that day Pharaoh and his 
people were drowned, Moses and those who were with him escaping: whereupon he 
said that he bore a nearer relation to Moses than they, and ordered his 
followers to fast on that day.  However, it seems afterwards he was not so 
well pleased in having imitated the Jews herein; and therefore declared that, 
if he lived another year, he would alter the day, and fast on the ninth, 
abhorring so near an agreement with them.2
   The pilgrimage to Mecca is so necessary a point of practice that, according 
to a tradition of Mohammed, he who dies without performing it, may as well die 
a Jew or a Christian;3 and the same is expressly commanded in the Korān.4  
Before I speak of the time and manner of performing this pilgrimage, it may be 
proper to give a short account of the temple of Mecca, the chief scene of the 
Mohammedan worship; in doing which I need be the less prolix, because that 
edifice has been already described by several writers,5 though they, following 
different relations, have been led into some mistakes, and agree not with one 
another in several particulars: nor, indeed, do the Arab authors agree in all 
things, one great reason whereof is their speaking of different times.
   The temple of Mecca stands in the midst of the city, and is honoured with 
the title of Masjad al alharām, i.e., the sacred or inviolable temple.  What 
is principally reverenced in this place, and gives sanctity to the whole, is a 
square stone building, called the Caaba, as some fancy, from its height, which 
surpasses that of the other buildings in Mecca,6 but more probably from its 
quadrangular form, and Beit Allah, i.e., the house of GOD, being peculiarly 
hallowed and set apart for his worship.  The length of this edifice, from 
north to south, is twenty-four cubits, its breadth from east to west twenty-
three cubits, and its height twenty-seven cubits: the door, which is on the 
east side, stands about four cubits from the ground; the floor being level 
with the bottom of the door.7  In the corner next this door is the black 
stone, of which I shall take notice by-and-bye.  On the north side of the 
Caaba, within a semicircular enclosure fifty cubits long, lies the white 
stone, said to be the sepulchre of Ismael, which receives the rain-water that 
falls off the Caaba by a spout, formerly of wood,1 but now of gold.  The Caaba 
has a double roof, supported within by three octangular pillars of aloes wood; 
between which, on a bar of iron, hang some silver lamps.  The outside is 
covered with rich black damask, adorned with an embroidered band of gold, 
which is changed every year, and was formerly sent by the Khalīfs, afterwards 
by the Soltāns of Egypt, and is now provided by the Turkish emperors.  At a 
small distance from the Caaba, on the east side, is the Station or Place of 
Abraham, where is another stone

   1  Levit. xvi. 29, and xxiii. 27.		2  Ebn al Athīr.  Vide Poc. 
Spec. p. 309.		3  Al Ghazāli.
4  Cap. 3, p. 42.  See also c. 22, p. 252 and c. 2, p. 14, &c.		5  
Chardin, Voy. de Perse, t. 2, p. 428, &c.; Bremond, Descrittioni dell' Eitto, 
&c., l. r, c. 29; Pitts' Account of the Rel. &c. of the Mohammedans, p. 98, 
&c.;and Boulainvilliers, Vie de Mahomed, p. 54, &c., which last author is the 
most particular.		6  Ahmed Ebn Yusef.		7  Sharif al Edrisi, and 
Kitab Masalec, apud Poc. Spec. p. 125, &c.		1  Sharif al Edrisi, 

much respected by the Mohammedans, of which something will be said hereafter.
   The Caaba, at some distance, is surrounded but not entirely, by a circular 
enclosure of pillars, joined towards the bottom by a low balustrade, and 
towards the top by bars of silver.  Just without this inner enclosure, on the 
south, north, and west sides of the Caaba, are three buildings, which are the 
oratories, or places where three of the orthodox sects assemble to perform 
their devotions (the fourth sect, viz., that of al Shāfeļ, making use of the 
station of Abraham for that purpose), and towards the south-east stands the 
edifice which covers the well Zemzem, the treasury, and cupola of al Abbas.2
   All these buildings are enclosed, a considerable distance, by a magnificent 
piazza, or square colonnade, like that of the Royal Exchange in London, but 
much larger, covered with small domes or cupolas, from the four corners 
whereof rise as many minārets or steeples, with double galleries, and adorned 
with gilded spires and crescents, as are the cupolas which cover the piazza 
and the other buildings.  Between the pillars of both enclosures hang a great 
number of lamps, which are constantly lighted at night.  The first foundations 
of this outward enclosure were laid by Omar, the second Khalīf, who built no 
more than a low wall to prevent the court of the Caaba, which before lay open, 
from being encroached on by private buildings; but the structure has been 
since raised, by the liberality of many succeeding princes and great men, to 
its present lustre.3
   This is properly all that is called the temple, but the whole territory of 
Mecca being also Harām, or sacred, there is a third enclosure, distinguished 
at certain distances by small turrets, some five, some seven, and others ten 
miles distant from the city.1  Within this compass of ground it is not lawful 
to attack an enemy, or even to hunt or fowl, or cut a branch from a tree: 
which is the true reason why the pigeons at Mecca are reckoned sacred, and not 
that they are supposed to be of the race of that imaginary pigeon which some 
authors, who should have known better, would persuade us Mohammed made pass 
for the Holy Ghost.2
   The temple of Mecca was a place of worship, and in singular veneration with 
the Arabs from great antiquity, and many centuries before Mohammed.  Though it 
was most probably dedicated at first to an idolatrous use,3 yet the 
Mohammedans are generally persuaded that the Caaba is almost coeval with the 
world: for they say that Adam, after his expulsion from paradise, begged of 
GOD that he might erect a building like that he had seen there, called Beit al 
Mįmūr, or the frequented house, and al Dorāh, towards which he might direct 
his prayers, and which he might compass, as the angels do the celestial one.  
Whereupon GOD let down a representation of that house in curtains of light,4 
and set it in Mecca, perpendicularly under its original,5 order-

   2 Idem, ibid		3  Poc. Spec. p. 116.		1  Gol. not. in Alfrag. 
p. 99.		2  Gab. Sionita, et Joh. Hesronita, de nonnullis Orient. 
urbib. ad calc. Geogr. Nub. p. 21.  Al Mogholtaļ, in his Life of Mohammed, 
says the pigeons of the temple of Mecca are of the breed of those which laid 
their eggs at the mouth of the cave where the prophet and Abu Becr hid 
themselves, when they fled from that city.  See before, p. 39.		3  See 
before, p. 13.		4  Some say that the Beit al Mįmūr itself was the 
Caaba of Adam, which, having been let down to him from heaven, was, at the 
Flood, taken up again into heaven, and is there kept.  Al Zamakh. in Kor. c. 
2.		5 Al

ing the patriarch to turn towards it when he prayed, and to compass it by way 
of devotion.6  After Adam's death, his son Seth built a house in the same form 
of stones and clay, which being destroyed by the Deluge, was rebuilt by 
Abraham and Ismael,7 at GOD'S command, in the place where the former had 
stood, and after the same model, they being directed therein by revelation.8
   After this edifice had undergone several reparations, it was, a few years 
after the birth of Mohammed, rebuilt by the Koreish on the old foundation,1 
and afterwards repaired by Abd'allah Ebn Zobeir, the Khalīf of Mecca, and at 
length again rebuilt by al Hejāj Ebn Yūsof, in the seventy-fourth year of the 
Hejra, with some alterations, in the form wherein it now remains.2  Some years 
after, however, the Khalīf Harūn al Rashīd (or, as others write, his father al 
Mohdi, or his grandfather al Mansūr) intended again to change what had been 
altered by al Hejāj, and to reduce the Caaba to the old form in which it was 
left by Abd'allah, but was dissuaded from meddling with it, lest so holy a 
place should become the sport of princes, and being new modelled after every 
one's fancy, should lose that reverence which was justly paid it.3  But 
notwithstanding the antiquity and holiness of this building, they have a 
prophecy, by tradition from Mohammed, that in the last times the Ethiopians 
shall come and utterly demolish it, after which it will not be rebuilt again 
for ever.4
   Before we leave the temple of Mecca, two or three particulars deserve 
further notice.  One is the celebrated black stone, which is set in silver, 
and fixed in the south-east corner of the Caaba, being that which looks 
towards Basra, about two cubits and one-third, or, which is the same thing, 
seven spans from the ground.  This stone is exceedingly respected by the 
Mohammedans, and is kissed by the pilgrims with great devotion, being called 
by some the right hand of GOD on earth.  They fable that it is one of the 
precious stones of paradise, and fell down to the earth with Adam, and being 
taken up again, or otherwise preserved at the Deluge, the angel Gabriel 
afterwards brought it back to Abraham when he was building the Caaba.  It was 
at first whiter than milk, but grew black long since by the touch of a 
menstruous woman, or, as others tell us, by the sins of mankind,5 or rather by 
the touches and kisses of so many people, the superficies only being black, 
and the inside still remaining white.6  When the Karmatians,7 among other 
profanations by them offered to the temple of Mecca, took away this stone, 
they could not be prevailed on, for love or money, to restore it, though those 
of Mecca offered no less than five thousand pieces of gold for it.8  How-

Jūzi, ex. trad. Ebn Abbas.  It has been observed that the primitive Christian 
church held a parallel opinion as to the situation of the celestial Jerusalem 
with respect to the terrestrial: for in the apocryphal book of the revelations 
of St. Peter (cap. 27), after Jesus has mentioned unto Peter the creation of 
the seven heavens-whence, by the way, it appears that this number of heavens 
was not devised by Mohammed-and of the angels, begins the description of the 
heavenly Jerusalem in these words: "We have created the upper Jerusalem above 
the waters, which are above the third heaven, hanging directly over the lower 
Jerusalem," &c. Vide Gagnier, not. ad Abulfed. Vit. Moh. p. 28.
   6  Al Shahrestani.		7  Vide Kor. c. 2, p. 15.		8  Al 
Jannābi, in Vita Abraham.		1  Vide Abulfed.  Vit. Moh. p. 13.	
	2  Idem, in Hist. Gen. al Jannābi, &c.		3  Al Jannābi.	4  
Idem, Ahmed Ebn Yusef.  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 115, &c.		5  Al Zamakh. &c. 
in Kor. Ahmed Ebn Yusef.		6  Poc. Spec. p. 117, &c.		7   
These Carmatians were a sect which arose in the year of the Hejra 278, and 
whose opinions overturned the fundamental points of Mohammedism.  See 
D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient Art. Carmath. and hereafter § viii.		8  D'Herbel. 
p. 40.

ever, after they had kept it twenty-two years, seeing they could not thereby 
draw the pilgrims from Mecca, they sent it back of their own accord; at the 
same time bantering its devotees by telling them it was not the true stone: 
but, as it is said, it was proved to be no counterfeit by its peculiar quality 
of swimming on water.1
   Another thing observable in this temple is the stone in Abraham's place, 
wherein they pretend to show his footsteps, telling us he stood on it when he 
built the Caaba,2 and that it served him for a scaffold, rising and falling of 
itself as he had occasion,3 though another tradition says he stood upon it 
while the wife of his son Ismael, whom he paid a visit to, washed his head.4  
It is now enclosed in an iron chest, out of which the pilgrims drink the water 
of Zemzem,5 and are ordered to pray at it by the Korān.6  The officers of the 
temple took care to hide this stone when the Karmatians took the other.7
   The last thing I shall take notice of in the temple is the well Zemzem, on 
the east side of the Caaba, and which is covered with a small building and 
cupola.  The Mohammedans are persuaded it is the very spring which gushed out 
for the relief of Ismael, when Hagar his mother wandered with him in the 
desert;8 and some pretend it was so named from her calling to him, when she 
spied it, in the Egyptian tongue, Zem, zem, that is, "Stay, stay,"9 though it 
seems rather to have had the name from the murmuring of its waters.  The water 
of this will is reckoned holy, and is highly reverenced, being not only drunk 
with particular devotion by the pilgrims, but also sent in bottles, as a great 
rarity, to most parts of the Mohammedan dominions.  Abd'allah, surnamed al 
Hāfedh, from his great memory, particularly as to the traditions of Mohammed, 
gave out that he acquired that faculty by drinking large draughts of Zemzem 
water,10 to which I really believe it as efficacious as that of Helicon to the 
inspiring of a poet.
   To this temple every Mohammedan, who has health and means sufficient11 
ought once, at least, in his life to go on pilgrimage; nor are women excused 
from the performance of this duty.  The pilgrims meet at different places near 
Mecca, according to the different parts from whence they come,12 during the 
months of Shawāl and Dhu'lkaada, being obliged to be there by the beginning of 
Dhu'lhajja, which month, as its name imports, is peculiarly set apart for the 
celebration of this solemnity.
   At the places above mentioned the pilgrims properly commence such; when the 
men put on the Ihrām, or sacred habit, which consists only of two woolen 
wrappers, one wrapped about the middle to cover their privities, and the other 
thrown over their shoulders, having their heads bare, and a kind of slippers 
which cover neither the heel nor the instep, and so enter the sacred territory 
in their way to Mecca.  While they have this habit on they must neither hunt 
nor fowl1 (though they are allowed to fish2), which precept is so punctually 
observed, that they will not kill even a louse or a flea, if they find them on 
their bodies: there are some noxious animals, however, which they have 
permission to kill during the pilgrimage, as kites, ravens, scorpions, mice, 
and dogs

   1  Ahmed Ebn Yusef, Abulfeda.  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 119.		2  Abulfed.	
	3  Vide Hyde, de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 35.		4  Ahmed Ebn Yusef, 
Safio'ddin.		5  Ahmed Ebn Yusef.		6  Cap. 2, p. 14.	
7  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 120, &c.		8  Gen. xxi. 19.		9  G. 
Sionit. et J. Hesr. de nonnull. urb. Orient. p. 19.
10  D'Herbel. p. 5.		11  See Kor. c. 3, p. 43, and the notes thereon.
		12  Vide Bobov. de Peregr. Mecc. p. 12, &c.		1  Kor. c. 
5, p. 85.		2 Ibid.

given to bite.3  During the pilgrimage it behoves a man to have a constant 
guard over his words and actions, and to avoid all quarrelling or ill 
language, and all converse with women and obscene discourse, and to apply his 
whole intention to the good work he is engaged in.
   The pilgrims, being arrived at Mecca, immediately visit the temple, and 
then enter on the performance of the prescribed ceremonies, which consist 
chiefly in going in procession round the Caaba, in running between the Mounts 
Safā and Merwā, in making the station on Mount Arafat, and slaying the 
victims, and shaving their heads in the valley of Mina.  These ceremonies have 
been so particularly described by others,4 that I may be excused if I but just 
mention the most material circumstances thereof.
   In compassing the Caaba, which they do seven times, beginning at the corner 
where the black stone is fixed, they use a short, quick pace the three first 
times they go round it, and a grave, ordinary pace, the four last; which, it 
is said, was ordered by Mohammed, that his followers might show themselves 
strong and active, to cut off the hopes of the infidels, who gave out that the 
immoderate heats of Medina had rendered them weak.5  But the aforesaid quick 
pace they are not obliged to use every time they perform this piece of 
devotion, but only at some particular times.6  So often as they pass by the 
black stone, they either kiss it, or touch it with their hand, and kiss that.
   The running between Safā and Merwā1 is also performed seven times, partly 
with a slow pace, and partly running:2 for they walk gravely till they come to 
a place between two pillars; and there they run, and afterwards walk again; 
sometimes looking back, and sometimes stopping, like one who has lost 
something, to represent Hagar seeking water for her son:3 for the ceremony is 
said to be as ancient as her time.4
   On the ninth of Dhu'lhajja, after morning prayer, the pilgrims leave the 
valley of Mina, whither they come the day before, and proceed in a tumultuous 
and rushing manner to Mount Arafat,5 where they stay to perform their 
devotions till sunset: then they go to Mozdalifa, an oratory between Arafat 
and Mina, and there spend the night in prayer and reading the Korān.  The next 
morning, by daybreak, they visit al Mashér al harām, or the sacred monument,6 
and departing thence before sunrise, haste by Batn Mohasser to the valley of 
Mina, where they throw seven stones7 at three marks, or pillars, in imitation 
of Abraham, who, meeting the devil in that place, and being by him disturbed 
in his devotions, or tempted to disobedience, when he was going to sacrifice 
his son, was commanded by GOD to drive him away by throwing stones at him;8 
though others pretend this rite to be as old as Adam, who also put the devil 
to flight in the same place and by the same means.9

   3  Al Beid.		4  Bobov. de Peregr. Mecc. p. II, &c.  Chardin, Voy. 
de Perse, t. 2, p. 440, &c.  See also Pitts' Account of the Rel. &c. of the 
Mohammedans, p. 92, &c.; Gagnier, Vie de Moh. t. 2, p. 258, &c.; Abulfed. Vit. 
Moh. p. 130, &c.; and Reland. de Rel. Moh. p. 113, &c.		5  Ebn al 
Athīr.		6  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 314.		1  See before, p. 16.	
2  Al Ghazāli.		3  Reland. de Rel. Moh. p. 121.		4  Ebn al 
Athīr.		5  See Kor. c. 2, p. 21.	
6  See Ibid.  M. Gagnier has been twice guilty of a mistake in confounding 
this monument with the sacred enclosure of the Caaba.  Vide Gagn. not. ad 
Abulfed. Vit. Moh. p. 131, and Vie de Moh. tom. 2, p. 262.		7  Dr. 
Pocock, from al Ghazāli, says seventy, at different times and places.  Spec. 
p. 315.			8  Al Ghazāli, Ahmed Ebn Yusef.		9  Ebn al 

   This ceremony being over, on the same day, the tenth of Dhu'lhajja, the 
pilgrims slay their victims in the said valley of Mina; of which they and 
their friends eat part, and the rest is given to the poor.  These victims must 
be either sheep, goats, kine, or camels; males, if of either of the two former 
kinds, and females if of either of the latter, and of a fit age.10  The 
sacrifices being over, they shave their heads and cut their nails, burying 
them in the same place; after which the pilgrimage is looked on as 
completed:11 though they again visit the Caaba, to take their leave of that 
sacred building.
   The above-mentioned ceremonies, by the confession of the Mohammedans 
themselves, were almost all of them observed by the pagan Arabs many ages 
before their prophet's appearance; and particularly the compassing of the 
Caaba, the running between Safā and Merwā, and the throwing of the stones in 
Mina; and were confirmed by Mohammed, with some alterations in such points as 
seemed most exceptionable: thus, for example, he ordered that when they 
compassed the Caaba they should be clothed;1 whereas, before his time, they 
performed that piece of devotion naked, throwing off their clothes as a mark 
that they had cast off their sins,2 or as signs of their disobedience towards 
   It is also acknowledged that the greater part of these rites are of no 
intrinsic worth, neither affecting the soul, nor agreeing with natural reason, 
but altogether arbitrary, and commanded merely to try the obedience of 
mankind, without any further view; and are therefore to be complied with; not 
that they are good in themselves, but because GOD has so appointed.4  Some, 
however, have endeavoured to find out some reason for the arbitrary 
injunctions of this kind; and one writer,5 supposing men ought to imitate the 
heavenly bodies, not only in their purity, but in their circular motion, seems 
to argue the procession round the Caaba to be therefore a rational practice.  
Reland6 has observed that the Romans had something like this in their worship, 
being ordered by Numa to use a circular motion in the adoration of the Gods, 
either to represent the orbicular motion of the world, or the perfecting the 
whole office of prayer to that GOD who is maker of the universe, or else in 
allusion to the Egyptian wheels, which were hieroglyphics of the instability 
of human fortune.7
   The pilgrimage to Mecca, and the ceremonies prescribed to those who perform 
it, are, perhaps, liable to greater exception than other of Mohammed's 
institutions; not only as silly and ridiculous in themselves, but as relics of 
idolatrous superstition.8  Yet whoever seriously considers how difficult it is 
to make people submit to the abolishing of ancient customs, how unreasonable 
soever, which they are fond of, especially where the interest of a 
considerable party is also concerned,

   10  Vide Reland. ubi sup. p. 117.		11  See Kor. c. 2, p. 21	
	1  Kor. c. 7, p. 106, 107.	
2  Al Faļk, de Tempore Ignor. Arabum, apud Millium de Mohammedismo ante Moh. 
p. 322. Compare Isa. lxiv. 6.	3  Jallal. al Beid.  This notion comes very 
near, if it be not the same with that of the Adamites.		4  Al 
Ghazāli.  Vide Abulfar. Hist. Dyn p. 171.		5  Abu Jįafar Ebn Tafail, in 
Vita Hai Ebn Yokdhān, p. 151.  See Mr. Ockley's English translation thereof, 
p. 117.
6  De Rel. Mah. p. 123.		7  Plutarch. in Numa. 		8  Maimonides (in 
Epist. ad Prosel. Rel.) pretends that the worship of Mercury was performed by 
throwing of stones, and that of Chemosh by making bare the head, and putting 
on unsewn garments.

and that a man may with less danger change many things than one great one,9 
must excuse Mohammed's yielding some points of less moment, to gain the 
principal.  The temple of Mecca was held in excessive veneration by all the 
Arabs in general (if we except only the tribes of Tay, and Khathįam, and some 
of the posterity of al Hareth Ebn Caab,1 who used not to go in pilgrimage 
thereto), and especially by those of Mecca, who had a particular interest to 
support that veneration; and as the most silly and insignificant things are 
generally the objects of the greatest superstition, Mohammed found it much 
easier to abolish idolatry itself, than to eradicate, the superstitious 
bigotry with which they were addicted to that temple, and the rites performed 
there; wherefore, after several fruitless trials to wean them therefrom,2 he 
thought it best to compromise the matter, and rather than to frustrate his 
whole design, to allow them to go on pilgrimage thither, and to direct their 
prayers thereto; contenting himself with transferring the devotions there paid 
from their idols to the true GOD, and changing such circumstances therein as 
he judged might give scandal.  And herein he followed the example of the most 
famous legislators, who instituted not such laws as were absolutely the best 
in themselves, but the best their people were capable of receiving: and we 
find GOD himself had the same condescendence for the Jews, whose hardness of 
heart he humoured in many things, giving them therefore statutes that were not 
good, and judgments whereby they should not live.3




HAVING in the preceeding section spoken of the fundamental points of the 
Mohammedan religion, relating both to faith and to practice, I shall in this 
and the two following discourses, speak in the same brief method of some other 
precepts and institutions of the Korān which deserve peculiar notice, and 
first of certain things which are thereby prohibited.
   The drinking of wine, under which name all sorts of strong and inebriating 
liquors are comprehended, is forbidden in the Korān in more places than one.1  
Some, indeed, have imagined that excess therein is only forbidden, and that 
the moderate use of wine is allowed by two passages in the same book:2 but the 
more received opinion is, that to drink any strong liquors, either in a lesser 
quantity, or in a greater, is absolutely unlawful; and though libertines3 
indulge them-

   9  According to the maxim, Tutius est multa mutare quąm unum magnum. 	
	1  Al Shahrestani.		2  See Kor. c. 2, p. 16.		3  
Ezek. xx. 25.  Vide Spencer de Urim et l'hummim, c. 4 § 7.		1  See c. 2, 
p. 23, and c. 5, p. 84.		2  Cap. 2, p. 23, and c. 16, p. 200.  Vide 
D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 696.		3  Vide Smith, de Morib. et Instit. 
Turcar Ep. 2, p. 28, &c.

selves in a contrary practice, yet the more conscientious are so strict, 
especially if they have performed the pilgrimage to Mecca,4 that they hold it 
unlawful not only to taste wine, but to press grapes for the making of it, to 
buy or to sell it, or even to maintain themselves with the money arising by 
the sale of that liquor.  The Persians, however, as well as the Turks, are 
very fond of wine; and if one asks them how it comes to pass that they venture 
to drink it, when it is so directly forbidden by their religion, they answer, 
that it is with them as with the Christians, whose religion prohibits 
drunkenness and whoredom as great sins, and who glory, notwithstanding, some 
in debauching girls and married women, and others in drinking to excess.5
   It has been a question whether coffee comes not under the above-mentioned 
prohibition,6 because the fumes of it have some effect on the imagination.  
This drink, which was first publicly used at Aden in Arabia Felix, about the 
middle of the ninth century of the Hejra, and thence gradually introduced into 
Mecca, Medina, Egypt, Syria, and other parts of the Levant, has been the 
occasion of great disputes and disorders, having been sometimes publicly 
condemned and forbidden, and again declared lawful and allowed.7  At present 
the use of coffee is generally tolerated, if not granted, as is that of 
tobacco, though the more religious make a scruple of taking the latter, not 
only because it inebriates, but also out of respect to a traditional saying of 
their prophet (which, if it could be made out to be his, would prove him a 
prophet indeed), "That in the latter days there should be men who should bear 
the name of Moslems, but should not be really such; and that they should smoke 
a certain weed, which should be called TOBACCO."  However, the eastern nations 
are generally so addicted to both, that they say, "A dish of coffee and a pipe 
of tobacco are a complete entertainment;" and the Persians have a proverb that 
coffee without tobacco is meat without salt.1
   Opium and beng (which latter is the leaves of hemp in pills or conserve) 
are also by the rigid Mohammedans esteemed unlawful, though not mentioned in 
the Korān, because they intoxicate and disturb the understanding as wine does, 
and in a more extraordinary manner: yet these drugs are now commonly taken in 
the east; but they who are addicted to them are generally looked upon as 
   Several stories have been told as the occasion of Mohammed's prohibiting 
the drinking of wine:3 but the true reasons are given in the Korān, viz., 
because the ill qualities of that liquor surpass its good ones, the common 
effects thereof being quarrels and disturbances in company, and neglect, or at 
least indecencies, in the performance of religious duties.4  For these reasons 
it was that the priests were, by the Levitical law, forbidden to drink wine or 
strong drink when they entered the tabernacle,5 and that the Nazarites6 and 
Rechabites,7 and

   4  Vide Chardin, ubi supra, p. 212.		5  Chardin, ubi sup. p. 344.	
		6  Abd'alkāder Mohammed al Ansāri has written a treatise 
concerning Coffee, wherein he argues for its lawfulness.  Vide D'Herbel. Art. 
7  Vide Le Traité Historique de l'Origine et du Progrčs du Café, ą la fin du 
Voy. de l'Arabie heur. de la Roque.		1  Reland. Dissert. Miscell. t. 2, 
p. 280.  Vide Chardin, Voy. de Perse, t. 2, p. 14 and 66.		2  Vide 
Chardin, ibid. p. 68, &c., and D'Herbel. p. 200.		3  Vide Prid. Life 
of Mah. p. 82, &c.; Busbeq. Epist. 3, p. 255; and Maundeville's Travels, p. I, 
4  Kor. c. 2, p. 23, c. 5, p. 84, and c. 4, p. 59.  See Prov. xxiii 29, &c.	
	5  Levit. x. 9.			6  Numb. vi. 2.		7  Jerem. xxxv. 5 

many pious persons among the Jews and primitive Christians, wholly abstained 
therefrom; nay, some of the latter went so far as to condemn the use of wine 
as sinful.8  But Mohammed is said to have had a nearer example than any of 
these, in the more devout persons of his own tribe.9
   Gaming is prohibited by the Korān10 in the same passages, and for the same 
reasons, as wine.  The word al Meisar, which is there used, signifies a 
particular manner of casting lots by arrows, much practised by the pagan 
Arabs, and performed in the following manner.  A young camel being bought and 
killed, and divided into ten or twenty-eight parts, the persons who cast lots 
for them, to the number of seven, met for that purpose; and eleven arrows were 
provided, without heads or feathers, seven of which were marked, the first 
with one notch, the second with two, and so on, and the other four had no mark 
at all.11  These arrows were put promiscuously into a bag, and then drawn by 
an indifferent person, who had another near him to receive them, and to see he 
acted fairly; those to whom the marked arrows fell won shares in proportion to 
their lot, and those to whom the blanks fell were entitled to no part of the 
camel at all, but were obliged to pay the full price of it.  The winners, 
however, tasted not of the flesh, any more than the losers, but the whole was 
distributed among the poor; and this they did out of pride and ostentation, it 
being reckoned a shame for a man to stand out, and not venture his money on 
such an occasion.1  This custom, therefore, though it was of some use to the 
poor and diversion to the rich, was forbidden by Mohammed2 as the source of 
great inconveniences, by occasioning quarrels and heart-burnings, which arose 
from the winners insulting of those who lost.
   Under the name of lots the commentators agree that all other games 
whatsoever, which are subject to hazard or chance, are comprehended and 
forbidden, as dice, cards, tables, &c.  And they are reckoned so ill in 
themselves, that the testimony of him who plays at them, is by the more rigid 
judged to be of no validity in a court of justice.  Chess is almost the only 
game which the Mohammedan doctors allow to be lawful (though it has been a 
doubt with some),3 because it depends wholly on skill and management, and not 
at all on chance: but then it is allowed under certain restrictions, viz., 
that it be no hindrance to the regular performance of their devotions, and 
that no money or other thing be played for or betted; which last the Turks and 
Sonnites religiously observe, but the Persians and Mogols do not.4  But what 
Mohammed is supposed chiefly to have dislike in the game of chess, was the 
carved pieces, or men, with which the pagan Arabs played, being little figures 
of men, elephants, horses, and dromedaries;5 and these are thought, by some 
commentators, to be truly meant by the images prohibited in one of the 
passages of the Korān6 quoted above.

   8  This was the heresy of those called Encratitę, and Aquarij. Khwāf, a 
Magian heretic, also declared wine unlawful; but this was after Mohammed's 
time.  Hyde, de Rel. Vet. Pers. p. 300.		9  Vide Reland. de Rel. Moh. 
p. 271.	10  Cap. 2, p. 23, c. 5, p. 84.		11  Some writers, as al 
Zamakh. and al Shirāzi, mention but three blank arrows.			1  
Auctores Nodhm al dorr, et Nothr al dorr, al Zamakh. al Firauzabādi, al 
Shirāzi in Orat. al Hariri, al Beidāwi, &c.  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 324, &c.	
	2  Kor. c. 5, p. 73.			3  Vide Hyde, de Luchs Oriental. in 
Prolog. ad Shahiludium.	
4  Vide eund. ibid.			5  Vide eundem, ibid. and in Hist. 
Shahiludij, p. 135,		6  Cap. 5, p. 84.

That the Arabs in Mohammed's time actually used such images for chess-men 
appears from what is related, in the Sonna, of Ali, who passing accidentally 
by some who were playing at chess, asked, "What images they were which they 
were so intent upon?"7 for they were perfectly new to him, that game having 
been but very lately introduced into Arabia, and not long before into Persia, 
whither it was first brought from India in the reign of Khosrū Nūshirwān.8  
Hence the Mohammedan doctors infer that the game was disapproved only for the 
sake of the images: wherefore the Sonnites always play with plain pieces of 
wood or ivory; but the Persians and Indians, who are not so scrupulous, 
continue to make use of the carved ones.1
   The Mohammedans comply with the prohibition of gaming much better than they 
do with that of win; for though the common people among the Turks more 
frequently, and the Persians more rarely, are addicted to play, yet the better 
sort are seldom guilty of it.2
   Gaming, at least to excess, has been forbidden in all well-ordered states.  
Gaming-houses were reckoned scandalous places among the Greeks, and a gamester 
is declared by Aristotle3 to be no better than a thief: the Roman senate made 
very severe laws against playing at games of hazard,4 except only during the 
Saturnalia; though the people played often at other times, notwithstanding the 
prohibition: the civil law forbad all pernicious games;5 and though the laity 
were, in some cases, permitted to play for money, provided they kept within 
reasonable bounds, yet the clergy were forbidden to play at tables (which is a 
game of hazard), or even to look on while others played.6  Accursius, indeed, 
is of opinion they may play at chess, notwithstanding that law, because it is 
a game not subject to chance,7 and being but newly invented in the time of 
Justinian, was not then known in the western parts.  However, the monks for 
some time were not allowed even chess.8
   As to the Jews, Mohammed's chief guides, they also highly disapprove 
gaming: gamesters being severely censured in the Talmud, and their testimony 
declared invalid.9
   Another practice of the idolatrous Arabs forbidden also in one of the 
above-mentioned passages,10 was that of divining by arrows.  The arrows used 
by them for this purpose were like those with which they cast lots, being 
without heads or feathers, and were kept in the temple of some idol, in whose 
presence they were consulted.  Seven such arrows were kept at the temple of 
Mecca;11 but generally in divination they made use of three only, on one of 
which was written, "My LORD hath commanded me," on another, "My LORD hath 
forbidden me," and the third was blank.  If the first was drawn, they looked 
on it as an approbation of the enterprise in question; if the second, they 
made a contrary conclusion; but if the

   7  Sokeiker al Dimishki, and Auctor libri al Mostatraf, apud Hyde, ubi sup. 
p. 8.		8  Khondemir. apud eund. ibid. p. 41.
1  Vide Hyde, ubi sup. p. 9.		2  Vide eundem, in Proleg. and Chardin, 
Voy. de Perse, t. 2, p. 46.		3  Lib. iv. ad Nicom.		4  Vide 
Horat. l. 3.  Carm. Od. 24.		5  ff. de Aleatoribus. Novell. Just. 123, 
&c.  Vide Hyde, ubi sup. in Hist. Aleę, p. 119.		6  Authent. 
interdicimus, c. de episcopis.		7  In com. ad Legem Pręd.	
8  Du Fresne, in Gloss.		9  Bava Mesia, 84, I; Rosh hashana and Sanhedr. 
24, 2.  Vide etiam Maimon. in Tract. Gezila.  Among the modern civilians, 
Mascardus thought common gamesters were not to be admitted as witnesses, being 
infamous persons.  Vide Hyde, ubi sup. in Proleg. et in Hist. Aleę, § 3.	
	10  Kor. c. 5.		11  See before, p. 16.

third happened to be drawn, they mixed them and drew over again, till a 
decisive answer was given by one of the others.  These divining arrows were 
generally consulted before anything of moment was undertaken; as when a man 
was about to marry, or about to go a journey, or the like.1  This 
superstitious practice of divining by arrows was used by the ancient Greeks,2 
and other nations; and is particularly mentioned in scripture,3 where it is 
said, that "the king of Babylon stood at the parting of the way, at the head 
of the two ways, to use divination; he made his arrows bright" (or, according 
to the version of the Vulgate, which seems preferable in this place, "he mixed 
together, or shook the arrows"), "he consulted with images," &c.; the 
commentary of St. Jerome on which passage wonderfully agrees with what we are 
told of the aforesaid custom of the old Arabs: "He shall stand," says he, "in 
the highway, and consult the oracle after the manner of his nation, that he 
may cast arrows into a quiver, and mix them together, being written upon or 
marked with the names of each people, that he may see whose arrow will come 
forth, and which city he ought first to attack."4
   A distinction of meats was so generally used by the eastern nations, that 
it is no wonder that Mohammed made some regulations in that matter.  The 
Korān, therefore, prohibits the eating of blood, and swine's flesh, and 
whatever dies of itself, or is slain in the name or in honour of any idol, or 
is strangled, or killed by a blow, or a fall, or by any other beast.5  In 
which particulars Mohammed seems chiefly to have imitated the Jews, by whose 
law, as is well known, all those things are forbidden; but he allowed some 
things to be eaten which Moses did not,6 as camels' flesh7 in particular.  In 
cases of necessity, however, where a man may be in danger of starving, he is 
allowed by the Mohammedan law to eat any of the said prohibited kinds of 
food;8 and the Jewish doctors grant the same liberty in the same case.9  
Though the aversion to blood and what dies of itself may seem natural, yet 
some of the pagan Arabs used to eat both: of their eating of the latter some 
instances will be given hereafter; and as to the former, it is said they used 
to pour blood, which they sometimes drew from a live camel, into a gut, and 
then broiled it in the fire, or boiled it, and ate it:1 this food they called 
Moswadd, from Aswad which signifies black; the same nearly resembling our 
black puddings in name as well as composition.2  The eating of meat offered to 
idols I take to be commonly practised by all idolaters, being looked on as a 
sort of communion in their worship, and for that reason esteemed by 
Christians, if not absolutely unlawful, yet as what may be the occasion of 
great scandal:3 but the Arabs were particularly superstitious in this matter, 
killing what they ate on stones erected on purpose around the Caaba, or near 
their own houses, and calling, at the same time, on the name of some idol.4  
Swine's flesh, indeed, the old Arabs seem not to have eaten; and their 
prophet, in

   1  Ebn al Athīr, al Zamakh. and al Beid. in Kor. c. 5.  Al Mostatraf, &c.  
Vide poc. Spec. p. 327, &c., and D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. Art Acdāh.	
	2  Vide Potter, Antiq. of Greece, vol. i. p. 334.		3  Ezek. 
xxi. 21.		4  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 329, &c.		5  Cap. 2, p. 18; 
c. 5, p. 73; c. 6; and c. 16.		6  Lev. xi. 4.		7  See Kor. c. 3, 
p. 37 and 42, and c. 6.		8  Kor. c. 5, p. 74, and in the other passages 
last quoted.		9  Vide Maimon. in Halachoth Melachim. c. 8, § i., &c.
		1  Nothr al dorr, al Firauz., al Zamakh., and al Beid.	
	2  Poc. Spec. p. 320.	
3  Compare Acts xv. 29 with I Cor. viii. 4, &c.		4  See the fifth chapter 
of the Kor. p. 73, and the notes there.

prohibiting the same, appears to have only confirmed the common aversion of 
the nation.  Foreign writers tell us that the Arabs wholly abstained from 
swine's flesh,5 thinking it unlawful to feed thereon,6 and that very few, if 
any, of those animals are found in their country, because it produces not 
proper food for them;7 which has made one writer imagine that if a hog were 
carried thither, it would immediately die.8
   In the prohibition of usury9 I presume Mohammed also followed the Jews, who 
are strictly forbidden by their law to exercise it among one another, though 
they are so infamously guilty of it in their dealing with those of a different 
religion: but I do not find the prophet of the Arabs has made any distinction 
in this matter.
   Several superstitious customs relating to cattle, which seem to have been 
peculiar to the pagan Arabs, were also abolished by Mohammed.  The Korān10 
mentions four names by them given to certain camels or sheep, which for some 
particular reasons were left at free liberty, and were not made use of as 
other cattle of the same kind.  These names are Bahīra, Sāļba, Wasīla, and 
Hāmi: of each whereof in their order.
   As to the first, it is said that when a she-camel, or a sheep, had borne 
young ten times, they used to slit her ear, and turn her loose to feed at full 
liberty; and when she died, her flesh was eaten by the men only, the women 
being forbidden to eat thereof: and such a camel or sheep, from the slitting 
of her ear, they called Bahīra.  Or the Bahīra was a she-camel, which was 
turned loose to feed, and whose fifth young one, if it proved a male, was 
killed and eaten by men and women promiscuously; but if it proved a female, 
had its ear slit, and was dismissed to free pasture, none being permitted to 
make use of its flesh or milk, or to ride on it; though the women were allowed 
to eat the flesh of it when it died: or it was the female young of the Sāļba, 
which was used in the same manner as its dam; or else an ewe, which had yeaned 
five times.1  These, however, are not all the opinions concerning the Bahīra: 
for some suppose that name was given to a she-camel, which, after having 
brought forth young five times, if the last was a male, had her ear slit, as a 
mark thereof, and was let go loose to feed, none driving her from pasture or 
water, nor using her for carriage;2 and others tell us, that when a camel had 
newly brought forth, they used to slit the ear of her young one, saying, "O 
GOD, if it live, it shall be for our use, but if it die, it shall be deemed 
rightly slain;" and when it died, they ate it.3
   Sāļba signifies a she-camel turned loose to go where she will.  And this 
was done on various accounts: as when she had brought forth females ten times 
together; or in satisfaction of a vow; or when a man had recovered from 
sickness, or returned safe from a journey, or his camel had escaped some 
signal danger either in battle or otherwise.  A camel so turned loose was 
declared to be Sāļba, and, as a mark of it, one of the vertebrę or bones was 
taken out of her back, after which none might drive her from pasture or water, 
or ride on her.4  Some say that the Sāļba, when she had ten times together 
brought forth females, was suffered to go at liberty, none being allowed to 
ride on her, and

   5  Solin. de Arab. c. 33.		6  Hieronym. in Jovin. l. 2, c. 6.	
	7  Idem, ibid.		
8  Solinus, ubi supra.		9  Kor. c. 2, p. 33, 34.		10  Cap. 5, 
p. 86.		1  Al Zamakh., al Beidāwi, al Mostatraf.		3  Ebn al 
Athīr.		4  Al Firauzab., al Zamakh.

that her milk was not to be drank by any but her young one, or a guest, till 
she died; and then her flesh was eaten by men as well as women, and her last 
female young one had her ear slit, and was called Bahīra, and turned loose as 
her dam had been.5
   This appellation, however, was not so strictly proper to female camels, but 
that it was given to the male when his young one had begotten another young 
one:6 nay, a servant set at liberty and dismissed by his master, was also 
called Sāļba;7 and some are of opinion that the word denotes an animal which 
the Arabs used to turn loose in honour of their idols, allowing none to make 
uses of them, thereafter, except women only.1
   Wasīla is, by one author,2 explained to signify a she-camel which had 
brought forth ten times, or an ewe which had yeaned seven times, and every 
time twin; and if the seventh time she brought forth a male and a female, they 
said, "Wosilat akhāha," i.e., "She is joined," or, "was brought forth with her 
brother," after which none might drink the dam's milk, except men only; and 
she was used as the Sāļba.  Or Wasīla was particularly meant of sheep; as when 
an ewe brought forth a female, they took it to themselves, but when she 
brought forth a male, they consecrated it to their gods, but if both a male 
and a female, they said, "She is joined to her brother," and did not sacrifice 
that male to their gods: or Wasīla was an ewe which brought forth first a 
male, and then a female, on which account, or because she followed her 
brother, the male was not killed; but if she brought forth a male only, they 
said, "Let this be an offering to our gods."3  Another4 writes, that if an ewe 
brought forth twins seven times together, and the eighth time a male, they 
sacrificed that male to their gods; but if the eighth time she brought both a 
male and a female, they used to say, "She is joined to her brother," and for 
the female's sake they spared the male, and permitted not the dam's milk to be 
drunk by women.  A third writer tell us, that Wasīla was an ewe, which having 
yeaned seven times, if that which she brought forth the seventh time was a 
male, they sacrificed it, but if a female, it was suffered to go loose, and 
was made use of by women only; and if the seventh time she brought forth both 
a male and a female, they held them both to be sacred, so that men only were 
allowed to make any use of them, or to drink the milk of the female: and a 
fourth5 describes it to be an ewe which brought forth ten females at five 
births one after another, i.e., every time twins, and whatever she brought 
forth afterwards was allowed to men, and not to women, &c.
   Hāmi was a male camel used for a stallion, which, if the females had 
conceived ten times by him, was afterwards freed from labour, and let go 
loose, none driving him from pasture or from water; nor was any allowed to 
receive the least benefit from him, not even to shear his hair.6
   These things were observed by the old Arabs in honour of their false gods,1 
and as part of the worship which they paid them, and were ascribed to the 
divine institution; but are all condemned in the Korān, and declared to be 
impious superstitions.2

   5  Al Jawhari, Ebn al Athīr.		6  Al Firauz.		7  Idem, al 
Jawhari, &c.		1  Nothr al dorr and Nodhm al dorr.		2  Al 
Firauz.		3  Idem, al Zamakh.		4  Al Jawhari.	5  Al 
6  Al Firauz., al Jawhari.		1  Jallal. in Kor.		2  Kor. c. 
5, p. 86, and c. 6.  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 330-334.

The law of Mohammed also put a stop to the inhuman custom which had been long 
practised by the Pagan Arabs, of burying their daughters alive, lest they 
should be reduced to poverty by providing for them, or else to avoid the 
displeasure and the disgrace which would follow, if they should happen to be 
made captives, or to become scandalous by their behaviour;3 the birth of a 
daughter being, for these reasons, reckoned a great misfortune,4 and the death 
of one as a great happiness.5  The manner of their doing this is differently 
related: some say that when an Arab had a daughter born, if he intended to 
bring her up, he sent her, clothed in a garment of wool or hair, to keep 
camels or sheep in the desert; but if he designed to put her to death, he let 
her live till she became six years old, and then said to her mother, "Perfume 
her, and adorn her, that I may carry her to her mothers;" which being done, 
the father led her to a well or pit dug for that purpose, and having bid her 
to look down into it, pushed her in headlong, as he stood behind her, and then 
filling up the pit, levelled it with the rest of the ground; but others say, 
that when a woman was ready to fall in labour, they dug a pit, on the brink 
whereof she was to be delivered, and if the child happened to be a daughter, 
they threw it into the pit, but if a son, they saved it alive.6  This custom, 
though not observed by all the Arabs in general, was yet very common among 
several of their tribes, and particularly those of Koreish and Kendah; the 
former using to bury their daughters alive in Mount Abu Dalāma, near Mecca.7  
In the time of ignorance, while they used this method to get rid of their 
daughters, Sįsaį, grandfather to the celebrated poet al Farazdak, frequently 
redeemed female children from death, giving for every one two she-camels big 
with young, and a he-camel; and hereto al Farazdak alluded when, vaunting 
himself before one of the Khalīfs of the family of Omeyya, he said, "I am the 
son of the giver of life to the dead;" for which expression being censured, he 
excused himself by alleging the following words of the Korān,8 "He who saveth 
a soul alive, shall be as if he had saved the lives of all mankind."1  The 
Arabs, in thus murdering of their children, were far from being singular; the 
practice of exposing infants and putting them to death being so common among 
the ancients, that it is remarked as a thing very extraordinary in the 
Egyptians, that they brought up all their children;2 and by the laws of 
Lycurgus3 no child was allowed to be brought up without the approbation of 
public officers.  At this day, it is said, in China, the poorer sort of people 
frequently put their children, the females especially, to death with 
   This wicked practice is condemned by the Korān in several passages;5 one of 
which, as some commentators6 judge, may also condemn

   3  Al Beidāwi, al Zamakh., al Mostatraf.		4  See Kor. c. 16.	
	5  Al Meidāni.		6  Al Zamakh.
7  Al Mostatraf.		8  Cap. 5, p. 77.		1  Al Mostatraf.  Vide Ebn 
Khalekān, in Vita al Farazdak, and Poc Spec. p. 334.		2  Strabo, l. 17.  
Vide Diodor. Sic. l. I, c. 80.		3  Vide Plutarch, in Lycurgo.	
	4  Vide Pufendorf, de Jure Nat. et Gent. l. 6, c. 7, § 6.  The Grecians 
also treated daughters especially in this manner-whence that saying of 
	[Greek text],-i.e.,
	"A man, tho' poor, will not expose his son;
	But if he's rich, will scarce preserve his daughter."-
See Potter's Antiq. of Greece, vol. ii. p. 333.		5  Cap. 6, p. 101, 103; 
c. 16; and c. 17.  See also chap. 81.
6  Al Zamakh., al Beid.

another custom of the Arabians, altogether as wicked, and as common among 
other nations of old, viz., the sacrificing of their children to their idols; 
as was frequently done, in particular, in satisfaction of a vow they used to 
make, that if they had a certain number of sons born, they would offer one of 
them in sacrifice.
   Several other superstitious customs were likewise abrogated by Mohammed, 
but the same being of less moment, and not particularly mentioned in the 
Korān, or having been occasionally taken notice of elsewhere, I shall say 
nothing of them in this place.




THE Mohammedan civil law is founded on the precepts and determinations of the 
Korān, as the civil laws of the Jews were on those of the Pentateuch; yet 
being variously interpreted, according to the different decisions of their 
civilians, and especially of their four great doctors, Abu Hanīfa, Malec, al 
Shāfeļ, and Ebn Hanbal,7 to treat thereof fully and distinctly in the manner 
the curiosity and usefulness of the subject deserves, would require a large 
volume; wherefore the most that can be expected here, is a summary view of the 
principal institutions, without minutely entering into a detail of 
particulars.  We shall begin with those relating to marriage and divorce.
   That polygamy, for the moral lawfulness of which the Mohammedan doctors 
advance several arguments,1 is allowed by the Korān, every one knows, though 
few are acquainted with the limitations with which it is allowed.  Several 
learned men have fallen into the vulgar mistake that Mahommed granted to his 
followers an unbounded plurality; some pretending that a man may have as many 
wives,2 and others as many concubines,3 as he can maintain: whereas, according 
to the express words of the Korān,4 no man can have more than four, whether 
wives or concubines;5 and if a man apprehend any inconvenience from even that 
number of ingenuous wives, it is added, as an advice (which is generally 
followed by the middling and inferior people),6 that he marry one only, or, if 
he cannot be contented with one, that he take up with his she-slaves, not 
exceeding, however, the limited number;7 and this

   7  See Sect. VIII.		1  See before, Sect. II., p. 31.		2  
Nic.Cusanus, in Cribrat. Alcor. l. 2, c. 19.  Olearius, in Itinerar.  P. Greg. 
Thoslosanus, in Synt. Juris, l. 9, c. 2, § 22.  Septemcastrensis (de Morib. 
Turc. p. 24) says the Mohammedans may have twelve lawful wives, and no more.  
Ricaut falsely asserts the restraint of the number of their wives to be no 
precept of their religion, but a rule superinduced on a politic consideration.  
Pres. State of the Ottoman Empire, bk. iii, c. 21. 
3  Marracc. in Prodr. ad Refut. Alcor. part iv. p. 52 and 71.  Prideaux, Life 
of Mah. p. 114.  Chardin, Voy. de Perse, t. i. p. 166.  Du Ryer, Sommaire de 
la Rel. des Turcs, mis ą la tźte de sa version de l'Alcor.  Ricaut, ubi supra.  
Pufendorf, de Jure Nat. et Gent. l. 6, c. I, § 18.		4  Cap. 4, p. 53.	
	5  Vide Gagnier, in Notis and Abulfedę Vit. Moh. p. 150 Reland. de Rel. 
Moh. p. 243, &c., and Selden, Ux. Hebr. l. r, c. 9.		6  Vide Reland ubi 
sup. p. 244.		7  Kor. c. 4, p. 53.

is certainly the utmost Mohammed allowed his followers: nor can we urge as an 
argument against so plain a precept, the corrupt manners of his followers, 
many of whom, especially men of quality and fortune, indulge themselves in 
criminal excesses;8 nor yet the example of the prophet himself, who had 
peculiar privileges in this and other points, as will be observed hereafter.  
In making the above-mentioned limitation, Mohammed was directed by the 
decision of the Jewish doctors, who, by way of counsel, limit the number of 
wives to four,9 though their law confines them not to any certain number.10
   Divorce is also well known to be allowed by the Mohammedan law, as it was 
by the Mosaic, with this difference only, that, according to the latter, a man 
could not take again a woman whom he had divorced, and who had been married or 
betrothed to another;1 whereas Mohammed, to prevent his followers from 
divorcing their wives on every light occasion, or out of an inconstant humour, 
ordained that, if a man divorced his wife the third time (for he might divorce 
her twice without being obliged to part with her, if he repented of what he 
had done), it should not be lawful for him to take her again until she had 
been first married and bedded by another, and divorced by such second 
husband.2  And this precaution has had so good an effect that the Mohammedans 
are seldom known to proceed to the extremity of divorce, notwithstanding the 
liberty given them, it being reckoned a great disgrace so to do; and there are 
but few, besides those who have little or no sense of honour, that will take a 
wife again on the condition enjoined.3  It must be observed that, though a man 
is allowed by the Mohammedan, as by the Jewish law,4 to repudiate his wife 
even on the slightest disgust, yet the women are not allowed to separate 
themselves from their husbands, unless it be for ill-usage, want of proper 
maintenance, neglect of conjugal duty, impotency, or some cause of equal 
import; but then she generally loses her dowry,5 which she does not if 
divorced by her husband, unless she has been guilty of impudicity or notorious 
   When a woman is divorced she is obliged, by the direction of the Korān, to 
wait till she hath had her courses thrice, or, if there be a doubt whether she 
be subject to them or not, by reason of her age, three months, before she 
marry another; after which time expired, in case she be found not with child, 
she is at full liberty to dispose of herself as she pleases; but if she prove 
with child, she must wait till she be delivered; and during her whole term of 
waiting she may continue in the husband's house, and is to be maintained at 
his expense, it being forbidden to turn the woman out before the expiration of 
the term, unless she be guilty of dishonesty.7  Where a man divorces a woman

   8  Sir J. Maundeville (who, excepting a few silly stories he tells from 
hearsay, deserves more credit than some travellers of better reputation), 
speaking of the Alcoran, observes, among several other truths, that Mahomet 
therein commanded a man should have two wives, or three, or four; though the 
Mahometans then took nine wives, and lemans as many as they might sustain.  
Maundev. Travels, p. 164.		9  Maimon. in Halachoth Ishoth. c. 14.	
	10  Idem, ibid.  Vide Selden, Uxor. Hebr. l. r, c. 9.
   1  Deut. xxiv. 3-4.  Jerem. iii.  I.  Vide Selden, ubi sup. l. r. c. II.	
	2  Kor. c. 2, p. 24.		3  Vide Selden, ubi sup. l. 3, c. 21, and 
Ricaut's State of the Ottom. Empire, bk. ii. c. 21.		4  Deut. xxiv I.  
Leo Modena, Hist. de gli Riti hebr. part i. c. 6.  Vide Selden, ubi sup.	
	5  Vide Busbeq. Ep. 3, p. 184; Smith, de Morib. ac Instit. Turcar. Ep. 
2, p. 52; and Chardin, Voy. de Perse, t. I, p. 169.		6  Kor. c. 4, p. 
55.	7  Kor. c. 2, p. 24, and c. 65.

before consummation, she is not obliged to wait any particular time,8 nor is 
he obliged to give her more than one-half of her dower.9  If the divorced 
woman have a young child, she is to suckle it till it be two years old; the 
father, in the meantime, maintaining her in all respects: a widow is also 
obliged to do the same, and to wait four months and ten days before she marry 
   These rules ar also copied form those of the Jews, according to whom a 
divorced woman, or a widow, cannot marry another man, till ninety days be 
past, after the divorce or death of the husband:2 and she who gives suck is to 
be maintained for two years, to be computed from the birth of the child; 
within which time she must not marry, unless the child die, or her milk be 
dried up.3
   Whoredom, in single women as well as married, was, in the beginning 
Mohammedism, very severely punished; such being ordered to be shut up in 
prison till they died: but afterwards it was ordained by the Sonna, that an 
adulteress should be stoned,4 and an unmarried woman guilty of fornication 
scourged with a hundred stripes, and banished for a year.5  A she-slave, if 
convicted of adultery, is to suffer but half the punishment of a free woman,6 
viz., fifty stripes, and banishment for six months; but is not to be put to 
death.  To convict a woman of adultery, so as to make it capital, four 
witnesses are expressly required,7 and those, as the commentators say, ought 
to be men: and if a man falsely accuse a woman of reputation of whoredom of 
any kind, and is not able to support the charge by that number of witnesses, 
he is to receive fourscore stripes, and his testimony is to be held invalid 
for the future.8  Fornication, in either sex, is by the sentence of the Korān 
to be punished with a hundred stripes.9
   If a man accuse his wife of infidelity, and is not able to prove it by 
sufficient evidence, and will swear four times that it is true, and the fifth 
time imprecate GOD'S vengeance on him if it be false, she is to be looked on 
as convicted, unless she will take the like oaths, and make the like 
imprecation, in testimony of her innocency; which is she do, she is free from 
punishment, though the marriage ought to be dissolved.10
   In most of the last-mentioned particulars the decisions of the Korān also 
agree with those of the Jews.  By the law of Moses, adultery, whether in a 
married women or a virgin betrothed, was punished with death; and the man who 
debauched them was to suffer the same punishment.1  The penalty of simple 
fornication was scourging, the

   8  Ibid. c. 33.		9  Ibid. c. 2, p. 25.		1  Ibid. c. 2, p. 
25, and c. 65.		2  Mishna, tit. Yabimoth, c. 4.  Gemar. Babyl. ad 
eund. tit. Maimon. in Halach.  Girushin, Shylhan Aruch, part iii.	3  Mishna, 
and Gemara, and Maimon. ubi supra.  Gem. Babyl. ad tit. Cetuboth, c. 5, and 
Jos. Karo, in Shylhān Aruch, c. 50, § 2.  Vide Selden, Ux. Hebr. l. 2, c. II, 
and l. 3, c. 10, in fin.	
4  And the adulterer also, according to a passage once extant in the Korān, 
and still in force, as some suppose.  See the notes to Kor. c. 3, p. 34, and 
the Prel. Disc. p. 52.		5  Kor. c. 4, p. 55.  See the notes there.	
	6  Ibid. p. 57.	
7  Ibid. p. 55.		8  Ibid. c. 24.		9  Ibid.   This law relates 
not to married people, as Selden supposes; Ux. Heb. l. 3, c. 12.		10  
Ibid. p. 288.  See the notes there.
   1  Levit. xx. 10; Deut. xxii. 22.  The kind of death to be inflicted on 
adulterers, in common cases being not expressed, the Talmudists generally 
suppose it to be strangling, which they think is designed wherever the phrase 
"shall be put to death," or "shall die the death," is used, as they imagine 
stoning is by the expression, "his blood shall be upon him;" and hence it has 
been concluded by some that the woman taken in adultery mentioned in the 
Gospel (John viii.) was a betrothed maiden, because such a one and her 
accomplice were plainly ordered to be stoned (Deut. xxii. 23, 24).  But the 
ancients seem to have been of a different opinion,

general punishment in cases where none is particularly appointed: and a 
betrothed bondmaid, if convicted of adultery, underwent the same punishment, 
being exempted from death, because she was not free.2  By the same law no 
person was to be put to death on the oath of one witness:3 and a man who 
slandered his wife was also to be chastised, that is scourged, and fined one 
hundred shekels of silver.4  The method of trying a woman suspected of 
adultery where evidence was wanting, by forcing her to drink the bitter water 
of jealousy,5 though disused by the Jews long before the time of Mohammed,6 
yet, by reason of the oath of cursing with which the woman was charged, and to 
which she was obliged to say "Amen," bears great resemblance to the expedient 
devised by that prophet on the like occasion.
   The institutions of Mohammed relating to the pollution of women during 
their courses,7 the taking of slaves to wife,8 and the prohibiting of marriage 
within certain degrees,9 have likewise no small affinity with the institutions 
of Moses;10 and the parallel might be carried farther in several other 
   As to the prohibited degrees, it may be observed, that the pagan Arabs 
abstained from marrying their mothers, daughters, and aunts both on the 
father's side and on the mother's, and held it a most scandalous thing to 
marry two sister, or for a man to take his father's wife;11 which last was, 
notwithstanding, too frequently practised,12 and is expressly forbidden in the 
   Before I leave the subject of marriages, it may be proper to take notice of 
some peculiar privileges in relation thereto, which were granted by GOD to 
Mohammed, as he gave out, exclusive of all other Moslems.  One of them was, 
that he might lawfully marry as many wives and have as many concubines as he 
pleased, without being confined to any particular number;1 and this he 
pretended to have been the privilege of the prophets before him.  Another was, 
that he might alter the turns of his wives, and take such of them to his bed 
as he thought fit, without being tied to that order and equality which others 
are obliged to observe.2  A third privilege was, that no man might marry any 
of his wives,3 either such as he should divorce during his lifetime, or such 
as he should leave widows at his death: which last particular exactly agrees 
with what the Jewish doctors have determined concerning the wives of their 
princes; it being judged by them to be a thing very indecent, and for that 
reason unlawful, for another to marry either the divorced wife or the widow of 
a king;4 and Mohammed, it seems, thought an equal respect, at least, due to 
the prophetic as to the regal dignity, and therefore ordered that his relicts 
should pass the remainder of their lives in perpetual widowhood.

and to have understood stoning to be the punishment of adulterers in general.  
Vide Selden, Ux. Hebr. l. 3, c. 11 and 12.
   2  Levit. xix. 20.		3  Deut. xix. 15, xvii. 6, and Numb. xxxv. 30.	
	4 Deut. xxii. 13-19.		5  Numb. v. 11, &c.		6  Vide 
Selden, ubi sup. l. 3, c. 15, and Leon. Modena, de' Riti Hebraici, parte iv. 
c. 6.		7  Kor. c. 2, p. 23.		8  Ibid. c. 4, p. 53 and 57, &c.	
	9  Ibid. p. 56		10  See Levit. xv. 24, xviii. 19, and xx. 18; 
Exod. xxi. 8-11; Deut. xxi. 10-14; Levit. xviii. and xx.			11  
Abulfed. Hist. Gen. al Shahrestani, apud Poc. Spec. p. 321 and 338.	
	12  Vide Poc. ibid. p. 337, &c.	13  Cap. 4, p. 56.		1  
Kor. c. 33.  See also c. 66, and the notes there.		2  Kor. c. 33.  
See the notes there.		3  Ibid.		4  Mishna, tit. Sanhedr. c. 2, 
and Gemar, in eund. tit. Maimon.  Halachoth Melachim, c. 2.  Vide Selden, Ux. 
Hebr. l. I, c. 10.  Prid. Life of Mah. p. 118.

   The laws of the Korān concerning inheritances are also in several respects 
conformable to those of the Jews, though principally designed to abolish 
certain practices of the pagan Arabs, who used to treat widows and orphan 
children with great injustice, frequently denying them any share in the 
inheritance of their fathers or their husbands, on pretence that the same 
ought to be distributed among those only who were able to bear arms, and 
disposing of the widows, even against their consent, as part of their 
husbands' possessions.5  To prevent such injuries for the future, Mohammed 
ordered that women should be respected, and orphans have no wrong done them; 
and in particular that women should not be taken against their wills, as by 
right of inheritance, but should themselves be entitled to a distributive part 
of what their parents, husbands, and near relations should leave behind them, 
in a certain proportion.6
   The general rule to be observed in the distribution of the deceased's 
estate is, that a male shall have twice as much as a female:1 but to this rule 
there are some few exceptions; a man's parents, for example, and also his 
brothers and sisters, where they are entitled not to the whole, but a small 
part of the inheritance, being to have equal shares with one another in the 
distribution thereof, without making any difference on account of sex.2  The 
particular proportions, in several cases, distinctly and sufficiently declare 
the intention of Mohammed; whose decisions expressed in the Korān3 seem to be 
pretty equitable, preferring a man's children first, and then his nearest 
   If a man dispose of any part of his estate by will, two witnesses, at the 
least, are required to render the same valid; and such witnesses ought to be 
of his own tribe, and of the Mohammedan religion, if such can be had.4  Though 
there be no express law to the contrary, yet the Mohammedan doctors reckon it 
very wrong for a man to give away any part of his substance from his family, 
unless it be in legacies for pious uses; and even in that case a man ought not 
to give all he has in charity, but only a reasonable part in proportion to his 
substance.  On the other hand, though a man make no will, and bequeath nothing 
for charitable uses, yet the heirs are directed, on the distribution of the 
estate, if the value will permit, to bestow something on the poor, especially 
such as are of kin to the deceased, and to the orphans.5
   The first law, however, laid down by Mohammed touching inheritances, was 
not very equitable; for he declared that those who had fled with him from 
Mecca, and those who had received and assisted him at Medina, should be deemed 
the nearest of kin, and consequently heirs to one another, preferably to and 
in exclusion of their relations by blood; nay, though a man were a true 
believer, yet if he had not fled his country for the sake of religion and 
joined the prophet, he was to be looked on as a stranger:6 but this law 
continued not long in force, being quickly abrogated.7
   It must be observed that among the Mohammedans the children of their 
concubines or slaves are esteemed as equally legitimate with those

   5  See c. 4, p. 53, 54, and 56, and the notes there.  Vide etiam Poc. Spec. 
p. 337.		6  Kor. c. 4, ubi supra.
1  Ibid. p. 54 and 72.  Vide Chardin, Voy. de Perse, t. 2, p. 293.		
	2  Kor. ibid. p. 54.	3  Ibid. and p. 72.
4  Kor. c. 5, p. 86.		5  Kor. c. 4, p. 54.			6  Cap. 8.	
	7  Ibid. and c. 33

of their legal and ingenuous wives; none being accounted bastards, except such 
only as are born of common women, and whose fathers are unknown.
   As to private contracts between man and man, the conscientious performance 
of them is frequently recommended in the Korān.1  For the preventing of 
disputes, all contracts are directed to be made before witnesses,2 and in case 
such contracts are not immediately executed, the same ought to be reduced into 
writing in the presence of two witnesses3 at least, who ought to be Moslems 
and of the male sex; but if two men cannot be conveniently had, then one man 
and two women may suffice.  The same method is also directed to be taken for 
the security of debts to be paid at a future day; and where a writer is not to 
be found, pledges are to be taken.4  Hence, if people trust one another 
without writing, witnesses, or pledge, the party on whom the demand is made is 
always acquitted if he denies the charge on oath, and swears that he owes the 
plaintiff nothing, unless the contrary be proved by very convincing 
   Wilful murder, though forbidden by the Korān under the severest penalties 
to be inflicted in the next life,6 is yet, by the same book, allowed to be 
compounded for, on payment of a fine to the family of the deceased, and 
freeing a Moslem from captivity; but it is in the election of the next of kin, 
or the revenger of blood, as he is called in the Pentateuch, either to accept 
of such satisfaction, or to refuse it; for he may, if he pleases, insist on 
having the murderer delivered into his hands, to be put to death in such 
manner as he shall think fit.7  In this particular Mohammed has gone against 
the express letter of the Mosaic law, which declare that no satisfaction shall 
be taken for the life of a murderer;8 and he seems, in so doing, to have had 
respect to the customs of the Arabs in his time, who, being of a vindictive 
temper, used to revenge murder in too unmerciful a manner,9 whole tribes 
frequently engaging in bloody wars on such occasions, the natural consequence 
of their independency, and having no common judge of superior.
   If the Mohammedan laws seem light in case of murder, they may perhaps be 
deemed too rigorous in case of manslaughter, or the killing of a man 
undesignedly, which must be redeemed by fine (unless the next of kin shall 
think fit to remit it out of charity), and the freeing of a captive: but if a 
man be not able to do this, he is to fast two months together, by way of 
penance.1  The fine for a man's blood is set in the Sonna at a hundred 
camels,2 and is to be distributed among the relations of the deceased, 
according to the laws of inheritances; but it must be observed that, though 
the person slain be a Moslem, yet if he be of a nation or party at enmity, or 
not in confederacy with those to whom the slayer belongs, he is not then bound 
to pay any fine at all, the redeeming a captive being, in such case, declared 
a sufficient penalty.3  I

   1  Cap. 5, p. 73; c. 17; c. 2, p. 31, &c.		2  Cap. 2, p. 31.	
	3  The same seems to have been required by the Jewish law, even in cases 
where life was not concerned.  See Deut. xix. 15, Matth. xviii. 16, John viii. 
17, 2 Cor. xiii. I.
4  Kor. c. 2, p. 30, 31. 		5  Vide Chardin, Voy. de Perse, t. 2, p. 
294, &c., and the notes to Kor. c. 5, p. 86.
6  Kor. c. 4, p. 64.		7  Cap. 2, p. 18, 19; c. 17.  Vide Chardin, ubi 
sup. p. 299, &c.		8  Numb. xxxv. 31.
9  This is particularly forbidden in the Korān, c. 17.		1  Kor. c. 
4, p. 64.		2  See the notes to c. 37
3  Kor. c. 4, p. 64.

imagine that Mohammed, by these regulations, laid so heavy a punishment on 
involuntary manslaughter, not only to make people beware incurring the same, 
but also to humour, in some degree, the revengeful temper of his countrymen, 
which might be with difficulty, if at all, prevailed on to accept a lighter 
satisfaction.  Among the Jews, who seem to have been no less addicted to 
revenge than their neighbours, the manslayer who had escaped to a city of 
refuge was obliged to keep himself within that city, and to abide there till 
the death of the person who was high priest at the time the fact was 
committed, that his absence and time might cool the passion and mitigate the 
resentment of the friends of the deceased; but if he quitted his asylum before 
that time, the revenger of blood, if he found him, might kill him without 
guilt;4 nor could any satisfaction be made for the slayer to return home 
before the prescribed time.5
   Theft is ordered to be punished by cutting off the offending part, the 
hand,6 which, at first sight, seems just enough; but the law of Justinian, 
forbidding a thief to be maimed,7 is more reasonable; because, stealing being 
generally the effect of indigence, to cut off that limb would be to deprive 
him of the means of getting his livelihood in an honest manner.8  The Sonna 
forbids the inflicting of this punishment, unless the thing stolen be of a 
certain value.  I have mentioned in another place the further penalties which 
those incur who continue to steal, and of those who rob or assault people on 
the road.9
   As to injuries done to men in their persons, the law of retaliation, which 
was ordained by the law of Moses,10 is also approved by the Korān:1 but this 
law, which seems to have been allowed by Mohammed to his Arabians for the same 
reasons as it was to the Jews, viz., to prevent particular revenges, to which 
both nations were extremely addicted,2 being neither strictly just nor 
practicable in many cases, is seldom put in execution, the punishment being 
generally turned into a mulct or fine, which is paid to the party injured.3  
Or rather Mohammed designed the words of the Korān relating thereto should be 
understood in the same manner as those of the Pentateuch most probably ought 
to be; that is, not of an actual retaliation, according to the strict literal 
meaning, but of a retribution proportionable to the injury: for a criminal had 
not his eyes put out, nor was a man mutilated, according to the law of Moses, 
which, besides, condemned those who had wounded any person, where death did 
not ensue, to pay a fine only,4 the expression "eye for eye and tooth for 
tooth" being only a proverbial manner of speaking, the sense whereof amounts 
to this, that every one shall be punished by the judges according to the 
heinousness of the fact.5
   In injuries and crimes of an inferior nature, where no particular 
punishment is provided by the Korān, and where a pecuniary compensation will 
not do, the Mohammedans, according to the practice of the

   4  See Numb. xxxv. 26, 27, 28.		5  Ibid. v. 32.		6  Kor. c. 
5, p. 78.  	7  Novell. 134, c. 13.
8  Vide Pufendorf, de Jure Nat. et Gent. l. 8, c. 3, § 26.		9  See the 
notes to c. 5, p. 78.		10  Exod. xxi. 24, &c., Levit. xxiv. 20, Deut. 
xix. 21.		1  Cap. 5, p. 79.		2  Vide Grotium , de Jure Belli et 
Pacis, l. I, c. 2, § 8.
3  Vide Chardin, t. 2, p. 299.  The talio, likewise established among the old 
Romans by the laws of the twelve tables, was not to be inflicted, unless the 
delinquent could not agree with the person injured.  Vide A. Gell. Noct. 
Attic. l. 20, c. I, and Festum, in voce Talio.
4  See Exod. xxi. 18, 19, and 22.		5  Barbeyrac, in Grot. ubi supra.  
Vide Cleric. in Exod. xxi. 24, and Deut. xix. 21.

Jews in the like case,6 have recourse to stripes or drubbing, the most common 
chastisement used in the east at this day, as well as formerly; the cudgel, 
which for its virtue and efficacy in keeping their people in good order, and 
within the bounds of duty, they say came down from heaven, being the 
instrument wherewith the judge's sentence is generally executed.7
   Notwithstanding the Korān is by the Mohammedans in general regarded as the 
fundamental apart of their civil law, and the decisions of the Sonna among the 
Turks, and of the Imāms among those of the Persian sect, with the explications 
of their several doctors, are usually followed in judicial determinations, yet 
the secular tribunals do not think themselves bound to observe the same in all 
cases, but frequently give judgment against those decisions, which are not 
always consonant to equity and reason; and therefore distinction is to be made 
between the written civil law, as administered in the ecclesiastical courts, 
and the law of nature or common law (if I may so call it) which takes place in 
the secular courts, and has the executive power on its side.1
   Under the head of civil laws may be comprehended the injunction of warring 
against infidels, which is repeated in several passages of the Korān,2 and 
declared to be of high merit in the sight of GOD, those who are slain fighting 
in defence of the faith being reckoned martyrs, and promised immediate 
admission into paradise.3  Hence this duty is greatly magnified by the 
Mohammedan divines, who call the sword the key of heaven and hell, and 
persuade their people that the least drop of blood spilt in the way of GOD, as 
it is called, is most acceptable unto him, and that the defending the 
territories of the Moslems for one night is more meritorious than a fast of 
two months:4 on the other hand, desertion, or refusing to serve in these holy 
wars, or to contribute towards the carrying them on, if a man has ability, is 
accounted a most heinous crime, being frequently declaimed against in the 
Korān.5  Such a doctrine, which Mohammed ventured not to teach till his 
circumstances enabled him to put it in practice,6 it must be allowed, was well 
calculated for his purpose, and stood him and his successors in great stead: 
for what dangers and difficulties may not be despised and overcome by the 
courage and constancy which these sentiments necessarily inspire?  Nor have 
the Jews and Christians, how much soever they detest such principles in 
others, been ignorant of the force of enthusiastic heroism, or omitted to 
spirit up their respective partisans by the like arguments and promises.  "Let 
him who has listed himself in defence of the law," says Maimonides,7 "rely on 
him who is the hope of Israel, and the saviour thereof in the time of 
trouble;8 and let him know that he fights for the profession of the divine 
unity: wherefore let him put his life in his hand,9 and think neither of wife 
nor children, but banish the memory of them from his heart, having his mind 
wholly fixed on the war.  For if he should begin to waver in his thoughts, he 
would not only confound himself, but sin against the law;

   6  See Deut. xxv. 2, 3.		7  Vide Grelot, Voy. de Constant. p. 220, 
and Chardin, ubi supra, p. 302.		1  Vide Chardin, ubi supra, p. 290, 
&c.		2  Cap. 22; c. 2, p. 20; c . 4, p. 62, &c.; c. 8; c. 9; c. 47 and 
c. 61, &c.		3  Cap. 2, p. 17; c. 3, p. 47; c. 47; c. 61.		4  
Reland. de Jure Milit. Moham. p. 5, &c.	5  Vide c. 9; c. 3, p. 47, &c.	
	6  See before, p. 37.		7  Halach. Melachim, c. 7.		8  
Jerem. xiv. 8.		9  Job xiii. 14.

nay, the blood of the whole people hangeth on his neck; for if they are 
discomfited, and he has not fought stoutly with all his might, it is equally 
the same as if he had shed the blood of them all; according to that saying, 
let him return, lest his brethren's heart fail as his own."1  To the same 
purpose doth the Kabala accommodate that other passage, "Cursed be he who doth 
the work of the LORD negligently, and cursed be he who keepeth back his sword 
from blood.2  On the contrary, he who behaveth bravely in battle, to the 
utmost of his endeavour, without trembling, with intent to glorify GOD'S name, 
he ought to expect the victory with confidence, and to apprehend no danger or 
misfortune, but may be assured that he will have a house built him in Israel, 
appropriated to him and his children for ever; as it is said, GOD shall 
certainly make my lord a sure house, because he hath fought the battles of the 
LORD, and his life shall be bound up in the bundle of life with the LORD his 
GOD."3  More passages of this kind might be produced from the Jewish writers; 
and the Christians come not far behind them.  "We are desirous of knowing," 
says one4 writing to the Franks engaged in the holy war, "the charity of you 
all; for that every one (which we speak not because we wish it) who shall 
faithfully lose his life in this warfare, shall be by no means denied the 
kingdom of heaven."  And another5 gives the following exhortation: "Laying 
aside all fear and dread, endeavour to act effectually against the enemies of 
the holy faith, and the adversaries of all religions: for the Almighty 
knoweth, if any of you die, that he dieth for the truth of the faith, and the 
salvation of his country, and the defence of Christians; and therefore he 
shall obtain of him a celestial reward."  The Jews, indeed, had a divine 
commission, extensive and explicit enough, to attack, subdue, and destroy the 
enemies of their religion; and Mohammed pretended to have received one in 
favour of himself and his Moslems, in terms equally plain and full; and 
therefore it is no wonder that they should act consistently with their avowed 
principles: but that Christians should teach and practise a doctrine so 
opposite to the temper and whole tenour of the Gospel, seems very strange; and 
yet the latter have carried matters farther, and shown a more violent spirit 
of intolerance than either of the former.
   The laws of war, according to the Mohammedans, have been already so exactly 
set down by the learned Reland,6 that I need say very little of them.  I 
shall, therefore, only observe some conformity between their military laws and 
those of the Jews.
   While Mohammedism was in its infancy, the opposers thereof taken in battle 
were doomed to death, without mercy; but this was judged too severe to be put 
in practice when that religion came to be sufficiently established, and past 
the danger of being subverted by its enemies.1  The same sentence was 
pronounced not only against the seven Canaanitish nations,2 whose possessions 
were given to the Israelites, and without whose destruction, in a manner, they 
could not have settled themselves in the country designed them, but against 

   1  Deut. xx. 8.		2  Jerem. xlviii. 10.		3  I Sam. xxv. 28, 
29.		4  Nicolaus, in Jure Canon. c. omnium, 23, quęst. 5. 		5  Leo 
IV. ibid. quęst. 8.		6  In his treatise De Jure Militari 
Mohammedanor. in the third vol. of his Dissertationes Miscellanęe.	
	1  See Kor. c. 47. and the notes there; and c. 4, p. 64; c. 5, p. 77.
2  Deut. xx. 16-18.

Amalekites3 and Midianites,4 who had done their utmost to cut them off in 
their passage thither.  When the Mohammedans declare war against people of a 
different faith, they give them their choice of three offers, viz., either to 
embrace Mohammedism, in which case they become not only secure in their 
persons, families, and fortunes, but entitled to all the privileges of other 
Moslems; or to submit and pay tribute,5 by doing which they are allowed to 
profess their own religion, provided it be not gross idolatry or against the 
moral law; or else to decide the quarrel by the sword, in which last case, if 
the Moslems prevail, the women and children which are made captives become 
absolute slaves, and the men taken in the battle may either be slain, unless 
they turn Mohammedans, or otherwise disposed of at the pleasure of the 
prince.6  Herewith agree the laws of war given to the Jews, which relate to 
the nations not devoted to destruction;7 and Joshua is said to have sent even 
to the inhabitants of Canaan, before he entered the land, three schedules, in 
one of which was written, "Let him fly, who will;" in the second, "Let him who 
surrender, who will;" and in the third, "Let him fight, who will;"8 though 
none of those nations made peace with the Israelites (except only the 
Gibeonites, who obtained terms of security by stratagem, after they had 
refused those offered by Joshua), "it being of the LORD to harden their 
hearts, that he might destroy them utterly."9
   On the first considerable success of Mohammed in war, the dispute which 
happened among his followers in relation to the dividing of the spoil, 
rendered it necessary for him to make some regulation therein; he therefore 
pretended to have received the divine commission to distribute the spoil among 
his soldiers at his own discretion,1 reserving thereout, in the first place, 
one-fifth part2 for the uses after mentioned; and, in consequence hereof, he 
took himself to be authorized on extraordinary occasions, to distribute it as 
he thought fit, without observing an equality.  Thus he did, for example, with 
the spoil of the tribe of Hawāzen taken at the battle of Honein, which he 
bestowed by way of presents on the Meccans only, passing by those of Medina, 
and highly distinguishing the principal Korashites, that he might ingratiate 
himself with them, after he had become master of their city.3  He was also 
allowed in the expedition against those of al Nadīr to take the whole booty to 
himself, and to dispose thereof as he pleased, because no horses or camels 
were made use of in that expedition,4 but the whole army went on foot; and 
this became thenceforward a law:5 the reason of which seems to be, that the 
spoil taken by a party consisting of infantry

   3  Ibid. c. xxv. 17-19.		4  Numb. xxxi. 17.		5  See c. 9, 
and the notes there.		6  See the notes to c. 47.		7  Deut. xx. 
10-15.		8  Talmud Hierosol. apud Maimonid.  Halach. Melachim, c. 6, 
§ 5.  R. Bechai, ex. lib. Siphre.  Vide Selden, de Jure Nat. et Gent.  Sec. 
Hebr. l. 6, c. 13 and 14; and Schickardi Jus Regium Hebr. c. 5, Theor. 16.
   9  Josh. xi. 20.  The Jews, however, say that the Girgashites, believing 
they could not escape the destruction with which they were threatened by GOD, 
if they persisted to defend themselves, fled into Africa in great numbers.  
(Vide Talm. Hieros. ubi sup.)  And this is assigned as the reason why the 
Girgashites are not mentioned among the other Canaanitish nations who 
assembled to fight against Joshua (Josh. ix. I0, and who were doomed to utter 
extirpation (Deut. xx. 17).  But it is observable, that the Girgashites are 
not omitted by the Septuagint in either of those texts, and that their name 
appears in the latter of them in the Samaritan Pentateuch: they are also 
joined with the other Canaanites as having fought against Israel, in Josh. 
xxiv. II.		1  Kor. c. 8.
2  Ibid.		3  Abulfed. in Vit. Moh. p. 118, &c.  Vide Kor. c. 9. and 
the notes there.		4  Kor. c. 59, see the notes there.		5  Vide 
Abulfed. ubi sup. p. 91.

only, should be considered as the more immediate gift of GOD,6 and therefore 
properly left to the disposition of his apostle.  According to the Jews, the 
spoil ought to be divided into two equal parts, one to be shared among the 
captors, and the other to be taken by the prince,7 and by him employed for his 
own support and the use of the public.  Moses, it is true, divided one-half of 
the plunder of the Midianites among those who went to battle, and the other 
half among all congregation:8 but this, they say, being a peculiar case, and 
done by the express order of GOD himself, must not be looked on as a 
precedent.9  It should seem, however, from the words of Joshua to the two 
tribes and a half, when he sent them home into Gilead after the conquest and 
division of the land of Canaan , that they were to divide the spoil of their 
enemies with their brethren, after their return:10 and the half which was in 
succeeding times taken by the king, was in all probability taken by him as 
head of the community, and representing the whole body.  It is remarkable that 
the dispute among Mohammed's men about sharing the booty at Bedr,11 arose on 
the same occasion as did that among David's soldiers in relation to the spoils 
recovered from the Amalekites;1 those who had been in the action insisting 
that they who tarried by the stuff should have no part of the spoil; and that 
the same decision was given in both cases, which became a law for the future, 
to wit, that they should part alike.
   The fifth part directed by the Korān to be taken out of the spoil before it 
be divided among the captors, is declared to belong to GOD, and to the apostle 
and his kindred, and the orphans, and the poor, and the traveller:2 which 
words are variously understood.  al Shāfeļ was of opinion that the whole ought 
to be divided into five parts; the first, which he called GOD'S part, to go to 
the treasury, and be employed in building and repairing fortresses, bridges, 
and other public works, and in paying salaries to magistrates, civil officers, 
professors of learning, ministers of public worship, &c.: the second part to 
be distributed among the kindred of Mohammed, that is, the descendants of his 
grandfather Hāshem, and of his great-uncle al Motalleb,3 as well the rich as 
the poor, the children as the adult, the women as the men; observing only to 
give a female but half the share of a male: the third part to go to the 
orphans: the fourth part to the poor, who have not wherewithal to maintain 
themselves the year round, and are not able to get their livelihood: and the 
fifth part to travellers, who are in want on the road, notwithstanding they 
may be rich men in their own country.4  According to Malec Ebn Ans the whole 
is at the disposition of the Imām or prince, who may distribute the same at 
his own discretion, where he sees most need.5  Abu'l Aliya wen according to 
the letter of the Korān, and declared his opinion to be that the whole should 
be divided into six parts, and that GOD'S part should be applied to the 
service of the Caaba: while others supposed GOD'S part and the apostle's to be 
one and the same.6  Abu Hanīfa thought that the share of Mohammed and his 
kindred sank at that prophet's death, since which the whole

   6  Vide Kor. c. 59, ubi supra.		7  Gemar. Babyl. ad tit. Sanhedr. c. 
2.  Vide Selden, de Jure Nat. et Gent. Sec. Hebr. lib. 6, c. 16.		8  
Numb. xxxi. 27.		9  Vide Maim. Halach, Melach. c. 4.	10  Josh. xxii. 8.
11  See Kor. c. 8., and the notes there.		1  I Sam. xxx. 21-25.	2  
Kor. c. 8.		3  Note, al Shāfeļ himself was descended from this latter.	
	4  Al Beid.  Vide Reland. de Jure Milit. Moham. p. 42, &c.
5  Idem.		6  Idem.

ought to be divided among the orphans, the poor, and the traveller.7  Some 
insist that the kindred of Mohammed entitled to a shire of the spoils are the 
posterity of Hāshem only; but those who think the descendants of his brother 
al Motalleb have also a right to a distributive part, allege a tradition in 
their favour purporting that Mohammed himself divided the share belonging to 
his relations among both families, and when Othmān Ebn Assān and Jobeir Ebn 
Matįm (who were descended from Abdshams and Nawfal the other brothers of 
Hāshem) told him, that though they disputed not the preference of the 
Hāshemites, they could not help taking it ill to see such difference made 
between the family of al Motalleb and themselves, who were related to him in 
an equal degree, and yet had no part in the distribution, the prophet replied 
that the descendants of al Motalleb had forsaken him neither in the time of 
ignorance, nor since the revelation of Islām; and joined his fingers together 
in token of the strict union between them and the Hāshemites.8  Some exclude 
none of the tribe of Koreish from receiving a part in the division of the 
spoil, and make no distinction between the poor and the rich; though, 
according to the more reasonable opinion, such of them as are poor only are 
intended by the text of the Korān, as is agreed in the case of the stranger: 
and others go so far as to assert that the whole fifth commanded to be 
reserved belongs to them only, and that the orphans, and the poor, and the 
traveller, are to be understood of such as are of that tribe.9  It must be 
observed that immovable possessions, as lands, &c., taken in war, are subject 
to the same laws as the movable; excepting only that the fifth part of the 
former is not actually divided, but the income and profits thereof, or of the 
price thereof, if sold, are applied to public and pious uses, and distributed 
once a year, and that the prince may either take the fifth part of the land 
itself, or the fifth part of the income and produce of the whole, as he shall 
make his election.




IT was a custom among the ancient Arabs to observe four months in the year as 
sacred, during which they held it unlawful to wage war, and took off the heads 
from their spears, ceasing from incursions and other hostilities.  During 
those months whoever was in fear of his enemy lived in full security; so that 
if a man met the murderer of his

				7  Idem.		8  Idem.		9  Idem.

father or his brother, he durst not offer him any violence:1 A great 
argument," says a learned writer, "of a humane disposition in that nation; who 
being by reason of the independent governments of their several tribes, and 
for the preservation of their just rights, exposed to frequent quarrels with 
one another, had yet learned to cool their inflamed breasts with moderation, 
and restrain the rage of war by stated times of truce."2
   This institution obtained among all the Arabian tribes, except only those 
of Tay and Khathįam, and some of the descendants of Al Hareth Ebn Caab (who 
distinguished no time or place as sacred),3 and was so religiously observed, 
that there are but few instances in history (four, say some, six, say 
others),4 of its having been transgressed; the wars which were carried on 
without regard thereto being therefore termed impious.  One of those instances 
was in the war between the tribes of Koreish and Kais Ailān, wherein Mohammed 
himself served under his uncles, being then fourteen,5 or, as others say, 
twenty6 years old.
   The months which the Arabs held sacred were al Moharram, Rajeb. Dhu'lkaada, 
and Dhu'lhajja; the first, the seventh, the eleventh, and the twelfth in the 
year.7  Dhu'lhajja being the month wherein they performed the pilgrimage to 
Mecca, not only that month, but also the preceding and the following, were for 
that reason kept inviolable, that every one might safely and without 
interruption pass and repass to and from the festival.8  Rajeb is said to have 
been more strictly observed than any of the other three,9 probably because in 
that month the pagan Arabs used to fast;10 Ramadān, which was afterwards set 
apart by Mohammed for that purpose, being in the time of ignorance dedicated 
to drinking in excess.11  By reason of the profound peace and security enjoyed 
in this month, one part of the provisions brought by the caravans of purveyors 
annually set out by the Koreish for the supply of Mecca,12 was distributed 
among the people; the other part being, for the like reason, distributed at 
the pilgrimage.1
   The observance of the aforesaid months seemed so reasonable to Mohammed, 
that it met with his approbation; and the same is accordingly confirmed and 
enforced by several passages of the Korān,2 which forbid war to be waged 
during those months against such as acknowledge them to be sacred, but grant, 
at the same time, full permission to attack those who make no such 
distinction, in the sacred months as well as in the profane.3
   One practice, however, of the pagan Arabs, in relation to these sacred

   1  Al Kazwīni, apud Golium in notis ad Alfrag. p. 4, &c.  Al Shahrestani, 
apud Poc. Spec. p. 311.  Al Jawhari, al Firauzab.
2  Golius, ubi supra, p. 5.		3  Al Shahrestani, ubi supra.  See before, 
p. 95.		4  Al Mogholtaļ.
5  Abulfeda, Vit. Moh. p. II.		6  al Kodāļ, al Firauz. apud Poc. Spec. p. 
174.  Al Mogholtaļ mentions both opinions.
7  Mr. Bayle (Dict. Hist. et Crit. Art. la Mecque, Rem. F.) accuses Dr. 
Prideaux of an inconsistency for saying in one place (Life of Mahomet, p. 64) 
that these sacred months were the first, the seventh, the eleventh, and the 
twelfth, and intimating in another place (ibid. p. 89) that three of them were 
contiguous.  But this must be mere absence of mind in Mr Bayle; for are not 
the eleventh, the twelfth, and the first months contiguous?  The two learned 
professors, Golius and Reland, have also made a small slip in speaking of 
these sacred months, which, they tell us, are the two first and the two last 
in the year.  Vide Golii Lex. Arab. col. 601, and Reland. de Jure Milit. 
Mohammed anor. p. 5.		8  Vide Gol. in Alfrag. p. 9.		9  Vide 
ibid. p. 6.	10  Al Makrīzi, apud Poc ubi supra.		11  Idem, and Auctor 
Neshk al Azhār, ibid.		12  See Kor. c. 106.	
1  A. Edrīsi apud Poc. Specim. p. 127.		2  Cap. 9; c. 2, p. 20; c. 5, 
p. 73; c. 5, p. 85, &c.		3  Cap. 9; c. 2, p. 20. 

months, Mohammed thought proper to reform: for some of them, weary of sitting 
quiet for three months together, and eager to make their accustomed incursions 
for plunder, used, by way of expedient, whenever it suited their inclinations 
or conveniency, to put off the observing of al Moharram to the following month 
Safar,4 thereby avoiding to keep the former, which they supposed it lawful for 
them to profane, provided they sanctified another month in lieu of it, and 
gave public notice thereof at the preceding pilgrimage.  This transferring the 
observation of a sacred month to a profane month, is what is truly meant by 
the Arabic word al Nasī, and is absolutely condemned, and declared to be an 
impious innovation, in a passage of the Korān5 which Dr. Prideaux,6 misled by 
Golius,7 imagines to relate to the prolonging of the year, by adding an 
intercalary month thereto.  It is true, the Arabs, who imitated the Jews in 
their manner of computing by lunar years, had also learned their method of 
reducing them to solar years, by intercalating a month sometimes in the third, 
and sometimes in the second year;8 by which means they fixed the pilgrimage of 
Mecca (contrary to the original institution) to a certain season of the year, 
viz., to autumn, as most convenient for the pilgrims, by reason of the 
temperateness of the weather, and the plenty of provisions;9 and it is also 
true that Mohammed forbade such intercalation by a passage in the same chapter 
of the Korān; but then it is not the passage above mentioned, which prohibits 
a different thing, but one a little before it, wherein the number of months in 
the year, according to the ordinance of GOD, is declared to be twelve;10 
whereas, if the intercalation of a month were allowed, every third or second 
year would consist of thirteen, contrary to GOD'S appointment.
   The setting apart of one day in the week for the more peculiar attendance 
on GOD'S worship, so strictly required by the Jewish and Christian religions, 
appeared to Mohammed to be so proper an institution, that he could not but 
imitate the professors thereof in that particular; though, for the sake of 
distinction, he might think himself obliged to order his followers to observe 
a different day form either.  Several reasons are given why the sixth day of 
the week was pitched on for this purpose;1 but Mohammed seems to have 
preferred that day chiefly because it was the day on which the people used to 
be assembled long before his time,2 though such assemblies were had, perhaps, 
rather on a civil than a religious account.  However it be, the Mohammedan 
writers bestow very extraordinary encomiums on this day, calling it the prince 
of day, and the most excellent day on which the sun rises;3 pretending also 
that it will be the day whereon the last judgment will be solemnized;4 and 
they esteem it a peculiar honour to Islām, that GOD has been pleased to 
appoint this day to be the feast-day of the Moslems, and granted them the 
advantage of having first observed it.5
   Though the Mohammedans do not think themselves bound to keep their day of 
public worship so holy as the Jews and Christians are cer-

   4  See the notes to c. 9, ubi sup.		5  Cap. 9, ibid.		6  
Life of Mah. p. 66.
7  In Alfrag. p. 12.		8  See Prid. Preface to the first vol. of his 
Connect. p. vi., &c.		9  Vide Gol. ubi supra.
10  Kor. c. 9.  See also c. 2, . 20.		1  See c. 63, and the notes 
there. 	2  Al Beidāwi.
3  Ebn al Athīr et al Ghazāli, apud Poc. Spec. p. 317.			4  
Vide Ibid.	5  Al Ghazāli, ibid.

tainly obliged to keep theirs, there being a permission, as is generally 
supposed, in the Korān,6 allowing them to return to their employments or 
diversion after divine service is over; yet the more devout disapprove the 
applying of any part of that day to worldly affairs, and require it to be 
wholly dedicated to the business of the life to come.7
   Since I have mentioned the Mohammedan weekly feast, I beg leave just to 
take notice of their two Beirāms,8 or principal annual feasts.  The first of 
them is called, in Arabic, Id al fetr, i.e., The feast of breaking the fast, 
and begins the first of Shawāl, immediately succeeding the fast of Ramadān; 
and the other is called Id al korbān, or Id al adhā, i.e., The feast of the 
sacrifice, and begins on the tenth of Dhu'lhajja, when the victims are slain 
at the pilgrimage of Mecca.9  The former of these feasts is properly the 
lesser Beirām, and the latter, the greater Beirām:1 but the vulgar, and most 
authors who have written of the Mohammedan affairs,2 exchange the epithets, 
and call that which follows Ramadān the greater Beirām, because it is observed 
in an extraordinary manner, and kept for three days together at Constantinople 
and in other parts of Turkey, and in Persia for five or six days, by the 
common people, at least, with great demonstrations of public joy, to make 
themselves amends, as it were, for the mortification of the preceding month;3 
whereas, the feast of sacrifices, though it be also kept for three days, and 
the first of them be the most solemn day of the pilgrimage, the principal act 
of devotion among the Mohammedans is taken much less notice of by the 
generality of people, who are not struck therewith, because the ceremonies 
with which the same is observed are performed at Mecca, the only scene of that 




BEFORE we take a view of the sects of the Mohammedans, it will be necessary to 
say something of the two sciences by which all disputed questions among them 
are determined, viz., their Scholastic and Practical Divinity.
   Their scholastic divinity is a mongrel science, consisting of logical, 
metaphysical, theological, and philosophical disquisitions, and built on

   6  Cap. 63, ubi supra.		7  Al Ghazāli, ubi sup. p. 318.	
	8  The word Beirām is Turkish, and properly signifies a feast-day or 
holiday.		9  See c. 9, and before, Sect. IV. p. 94.		1  Vide 
Reland. de Relig. Moh. p. 109, and D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. Art. Beirām.	
	2  Hyde, in notis ad Bobov. p. 16; Chardin, Voy. de Perse, tom. ii. p. 
450; Ricaut's State of the Ottoman Empire, l. 2. c. 24, &c.		3  Vide 
Chardin and Ricaut, ubi supra.

principles and methods of reasoning very different from what are used by those 
who pass among the Mohammedans themselves for the sounder divines or more able 
philosophers,1 and, therefore, in the partition of the sciences this is 
generally left out, as unworthy a place among them.2  The learned Maimonides3 
has laboured to expose the principles and systems of the scholastic divines, 
as frequently repugnant to the nature of the world and the order of the 
creation, and intolerably absurd.
   This art of handling religious disputes was not known in the infancy of 
Mohammedism, but was brought in when sects sprang up, and articles of religion 
began to be called in question, and was at first made use of to defend the 
truth o those articles against innovators;1 and while it keeps within those 
bounds is allowed to be a commendable study, being necessary for the defence 
of the faith: but when it proceeds farther, out of an itch of disputation, it 
is judged worthy of censure.
   This is the opinion of al Ghazāli,2 who observes a medium between those who 
have too high a value for this science, and those who absolutely reject it.  
Among the latter was al Shāfeļ, who declared that, in his judgment, if any man 
employed his time that way, he deserved to be fixed to a stake, and carried 
about through all the Arab tribes, with the following proclamation to be made 
before him: 'This is the reward of him who, leaving the Korān and the Sonna, 
applied himself to the study of scholastic divinity."3  Al Ghazāli, on the 
other hand, thinks that as it was introduced by the invasion of heresies, it 
is necessary to be retained in order to quell them: but then in the person who 
studies this science he requires three things, diligence, acuteness of 
judgment, and probity of manners; and is by no means for suffering the same to 
be publicly explained.4  This science, therefore, among the Mohammedans, is 
the art of controversy, by which they discuss points of faith concerning the 
essence and attributes of GOD, and the conditions of all possible things, 
either in respect to their creation, or final restoration, according to the 
rules of the religion of Islām.5
   The other science is practical divinity or jurisprudence, and is the 
knowledge of the decisions of the law which regard practice, gathered from 
distinct proofs.
   Al Ghazāli declares that he had much the same opinion of this science as of 
the former, its original being owing to the corruption of religion and 
morality; and therefore judged both sciences to be necessary, not in 
themselves, but by accident only, to curb the irregular imaginations and 
passions of mankind (as guards become necessary in the highways by reason of 
robbers), the end of the first being the suppressing of heresies, and of the 
other the decision of legal controversies, for the quiet and peaceable living 
of mankind in this world, and for the preserving the rule by which the 
magistrate may prevent one man from injuring another, by declaring what is 
lawful and what is unlawful, by determining the satisfaction to be given, or 
punishment to be

   1  Poc. Spec. p. 196.		2  Apud Ebn Sina, in Libello de Divisione 
Scientiar, et Nasiro'ddin al Tūsi, in Pręfat. ad Ethic.
3  More Nevoch. l. I, c. 71 and 73.		1  Al Ghazāli, apud Poc. ubi supra.	
	2  Ibid.
3  Vide Poc. ibid. p. 197.			4  Al Ghazāli, ibid.		5  Ebn 
al Kossį apud eund. ibid. p. 198.

inflicted, and by regulating other outward actions; and not only so, but to 
decide of religion itself, and its conditions, so far as relates to the 
profession made by the mouth, it not being the business of the civilian to 
inquire into the heart:1 the depravity of men's manners, however, has made 
this knowledge of the laws so very requisite, that it is usually called the 
Science, by way of excellence, nor is any man reckoned learned who has not 
applied himself thereto.2
   The points of faith, subject to the examination and discussion of the 
scholastic divines, are reduced to four general heads, which they call the 
four bases, or great fundamental articles.3
   The first basis relates to the attributes of GOD, and his unity consistent 
therewith.  Under this head are comprehended the questions concerning the 
eternal attributes, which are asserted by some, and denied by others; and also 
the explication of the essential attributes, and attributes of action; what is 
proper for GOD to do, and what may be affirmed of him, and what it is 
impossible for him to do.  These things are controverted between the 
Ashįrians, the Kerāmians, the Mojassemians or Corporalists, and the 
   The second basis regards predestination, and the justice thereof: which 
comprises the questions concerning GOD'S purpose and decree, man's compulsion 
or necessity to act, and his co-operation in producing actions, by which he 
may gain to himself good or evil; and also those which concern GOD'S willing 
good and evil, and what things are subject to his power, and what to his 
knowledge; some maintaining the affirmative, and others the negative.  These 
points are disputed among the Kadarians, the Najarians, the Jabarians, the 
Ashįrians, and the Kerāmians.5
   The third basis concerns the promises and threats, the precise acceptation 
of names used in divinity, and the divine decisions; and comprehends questions 
relating to faith, repentance, promises, threats, forbearance, infidelity, and 
error.  The controversies under this head are on foot between the Morgians, 
the Waļdians, the Mótazalites, the Ashįrians, and the Kerāmians.1
   The fourth basis regards history and reason, that is, the just weight they 
ought to have in matters belonging to faith and religion; and also the mission 
of prophets, and the office of Imām, or chief pontiff.  Under this head are 
comprised all casuistical questions relating to the moral beauty or turpitude 
of actions; inquiring whether things are allowed or forbidden by reason of 
their own nature, or by the positive law; and also questions concerning the 
preference of actions, the favour or grace of GOD, the innocence which ought 
to attend the prophetical office, and the conditions requisite in the office 
of Imām; some asserting it depends on right of succession, others on the 
consent of the faithful; and also the method of transferring it with the 
former, and of confirming it with the latter.  These matters are the subjects 
of dispute between the Shiites, the Mótazalites, the Kerāmians, and the 
   The different sects of Mohammedans may be distinguished into two

   1  Al Ghazāli.  Vide ibid. p. 198-204.		2  Vide ibid. p. 204.	
	3  Vide Abulfarag, Hist. Dynast. p. 166.
4  Al Shahrestani, apud Poc. ubi. sup. p. 204, &c.		5  Idem, ibid. 
p.205.		1  Idem, ibid. p. 206.
2  Idem, ibid.

sorts; those generally esteemed orthodox, and those which are esteemed 
   The former, by a general name, are called Sonnites or Traditionists; 
because they acknowledge the authority of the Sonna, or collection of moral 
traditions of the sayings and actions of their prophet, which is a sort of 
supplement to the Korān, directing the observance of several things omitted in 
that book, and in name, as well as design, answering to the Mishna of the 
   The Sonnites are subdivided into four chief sects, which, notwithstanding 
some differences as to legal conclusions in their interpretation of the Korān, 
and matters of practice, are generally acknowledge to be orthodox in radicals, 
or matters of faith, and capable of salvation, and have each of them their 
several stations or oratories in the temple of Mecca.4  The founders of these 
sects are looked upon as the great masters of jurisprudence, and are said to 
have been men of great devotion and self-denial, well versed in the knowledge 
of those things which belong to the next life and to man's right conduct here, 
and directing all their knowledge to the glory of GOD.  This is al Ghazāli's 
encomium of them, who thinks it derogatory to their honour that their names 
should be used by those who, neglecting to imitate the other virtues which 
make up their character, apply themselves only to attain their skill, and 
follow their opinions in matters of legal practice.1
   The first of the four orthodox sects is that of the Hanefites, so named 
from their founder, Abu Hanīfa al Nómān Ebn Thābet, who was born at Cufa, in 
the 80th year of the Hejra, and died in the 150th, according to the more 
preferable opinion as to the time.2  He ended his life in prison at Baghdād, 
where he had been confined because he refused to be made Kādi or judge;3 on 
which account he was very hardly dealt with by his superiors, yet could not be 
prevailed on, either by threats or ill-treatment, to undertake the charge, 
"choosing rather to be punished by them than by GOD," says Al Ghazāli; who 
adds, that when he excused himself from accepting the office by alleging that 
he was unfit for it, being asked the reason, he replied, "If I speak the 
truth, I am unfit; but if I tell a lie, a liar is not fit to be a judge."  It 
is said that he read the Korān in the prison where he died, no less than 7,000 
   The Hanefites are called by an Arabian writer5 the followers of reason, and 
those of the three other sects, followers of tradition; the former being 
principally guided by their own judgment in their decisions, and the latter 
adhering more tenaciously to the traditions of Mohammed.
   The sect of Abu Hanīfa heretofore obtained chiefly in Irāk,6 but now 
generally prevails among the Turks and Tartars: his doctrine was brought into 
great credit by Abu Yūsof, chief justice under the Khalīfs al Hādi and Harūn 
al Rashīd.7

   3  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 298.  Prid. Life of Mahomet, p. 51, &c.  Reland. de 
Rel. Moh. p. 68, &c. Millium, de Mohammedismo ante Moh. p. 368, 369.	
	4  See before, p. 90.		1  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 293.		2  Ebn 
   3  This was the true cause of his imprisonment and death, and not his 
refusing to subscribe to the opinion of absolute predestination, as D'Herbelot 
writes (Bibl. Orient. p. 21), misled by the dubious acceptation of the word 
"kadā," which signifies not only GOD'S decree in particular, but also the 
giving sentence as a judge in general; nor could Abu Hanīfa have been reckoned 
orthodox had he denied one of the principal articles of faith.		4  
Poc. Spec. p. 297, 298.		5  Al Shahrestani, ibid.
6  Idem.		7  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 21 and 22.

   The second orthodox sect is that of Mālec Ebn Ans, who was born at Medina, 
in the year of the Hejra 90, 93, 94,8 or 95,9 and died there in 177,10 178,11 or 
17912 (for so much do authors differ).  This doctor is said to have paid great 
regard to the traditions of Mohammed.13  In his last illness, a friend going 
to visit him found him in tears, and asking him the reason of it, he answered, 
"How should I not weep? and who has more reason to weep than I?  Would to GOD 
that for every question decided by me according to my own opinion, I had 
received so many stripes! then would my accounts be easier.  Would to GOD I 
had never given any decision of my own!"1  Al Ghazāli thinks it a sufficient 
proof of Malec's directing his knowledge to the glory of GOD, that being once 
asked his opinion as to forty-eight questions, his answer to thirty-two of 
them was, that he did not know; it being no easy matter for one who has any 
other view than God's glory to make so frank a confession of his ignorance.2
   The doctrine of Malec is chiefly followed in Barbary and other parts of 
   The author of the third orthodox sect was Mohammed Ebn Edrīs al Shāfeļ, 
born either at Gaza or Ascalon, in Palestine, in the year of the Hejra 150, 
the same day (as some will have it) that Abu Hanīfa died, and was carried to 
Mecca at two years of age, and there educated.3  He died in 204,4 in Egypt, 
whither he went about five years before.5  This doctor is celebrated for his 
excellency in all parts of learning, and was much esteemed by Ebn Hanbal his 
contemporary, who used to say that "he was as the sun to the world, and as 
health to the body."  Ebn Hanbal, however, had so ill an opinion of al Shāfeļ 
at first, that he forbad his scholars to go near him; but some time after one 
of them, meeting his master trudging on foot after al Shāfeļ, who rode on a 
mule, asked him how it came about that he forbad them to follow him, and did 
it himself? to which Ebn Hanbal replied, "Hold thy peace; if thou but attend 
his mule thou wilt profit thereby."6
   Al Shāfeļ is said to have been the first who discoursed of jurisprudence, 
and reduced that science into a method;7 one wittily saying, that the relators 
of the traditions of Mohammed were asleep till al Shāfeļ came and waked them.8  
He was a great enemy to the scholastic divines, as has been already observed.9  
Al Ghazāli tells us that al Shāfeļ used to divide the night into three parts, 
one for study, another for prayer, and the third for sleep.  It is also 
related of him that he never so much as once swore by GOD, either to confirm a 
truth, or to affirm a falsehood; and that being once asked his opinion, he 
remained silent for some time, and when the reason of his silence was 
demanded, he answered, "I am considering first whether it be better to speak 
or to hold my tongue."  The following saying is also recorded of him, viz., 
"Whoever pretends to love the world and its Creator at the same time, is a 
liar."1  The followers of this doctor are from him called Shāfeļtes, and were 
formerly spread into Māwara'lnahr and other parts eastward, but are now 
chiefly of Arabia and Persia.

   8  Abulfeda.		9  Ebn Khalecān.		10  Idem.		11  
Abulfeda.		12  Elmacinus, p. 114.		13  Ebn Khalec.  Vide Poc. 
Spec. p. 294.		1  Idem, apud eund. ibid.	2  Al Ghazāli, ibid.
3  Ebn Khalecān.			4  Yet Abulfeda says he lived fifty-eight years.
		5  Ebn Khalecān.
6  Idem.		7  Idem.		8  Al Zįfarāni, apud Poc. Spec. p. 296.	
	9  See before, p. 118.
1  Vide Poc. Spec. 295-297.

   Ahmed Ebn Hanbal, the founder of the fourth sect, was born in the year of 
the Hejra 164; but as to the place of his birth there are two traditions: some 
say he was born at Merū in Khorasān, of which city his parents were, and that 
his mother brought him from thence to Baghdād at her breast; while others 
assure us that she was with child of him when she came to Baghdād, and that he 
was born there.2  Ebn Hanbal in process of time attained a great reputation on 
account of his virtue and knowledge; being so well versed in the traditions of 
Mohammed, in particular, that it is said he could repeat no less than a 
million of them.3  He was very intimate with al Shāfeļ, from whom he received 
most of his traditionary knowledge, being his constant attendant till his 
departure for Egypt.4  Refusing to acknowledge the Korān to be created,5 he 
was, by order of the Khalīf al Mótasem, severely scourged and imprisoned.6  
Ebn Hanbal died at Baghdād, in the year 241, and was followed to his grave by 
eight hundred thousand men, and sixty thousand women.  It is relate, as 
something very extraordinary, if not miraculous, that on the day of his death 
no less than twenty thousand Christians, Jews, and Magians, embraced the 
Mohammedan faith.7  This sect increased so fast, and became so powerful and 
bold, that in the year 323, in the Khalīfat of al Rādi, they raised a great 
commotion in Baghdād, entering people's houses, and spilling their wine, if 
they found any, and beating the singing-women they met with, and breaking 
their instruments; and a severe edict was published against them, before they 
could be reduced to their duty:8 but the Hanbalites at present are not very 
numerous, few of them being to be met with out of the limits of Arabia.
   The heretical sects among the Mohammedans are those which hold heterodox 
opinions in fundamental, or matters of faith.
   The first controversies relating to fundamentals began when most of the 
companions of Mohammed were dead:9 for in their days was no dispute, unless 
about things of small moment, if we except only the dissensions concerning the 
Imāms, or rightful successors of their prophet, which were stirred up and 
fomented by interest and ambition; the Arabs' continual employment in the 
wars, during that time, allowing them little or no leisure to enter into nice 
inquiries and subtle distinctions: but no sooner was the ardour of conquest a 
little abated than they began to examine the Korān more nearly; whereupon 
differences in opinion became unavoidable, and at length so greatly 
multiplied, that the number of their sects, according to the common opinion, 
are seventy-three.  For the Mohammedans seem ambitious that their religion 
should exceed others even in this respect; saying, that the Magians are 
divided into seventy sects, the Jews into seventy-one, the Christians into 
seventy-two, and the Moslems into seventy-three, as Mohammed had foretold;1 of 
which sects they reckon one to be always orthodox, and entitled to salvation.2
   The first heresy was that of the Khārejites, who revolted from Ali in the 
thirty-seventh year of the Hejra; and not long after, Mįbad a.

   2  Ebn Khalecān.		3  Idem.			4  Idem.		
	5  See before, Sect. III. p. 53, &c.
6  Ebn Khalecān, Abulfarag, Hist. Dyn. p. 252, &c.		7  Ebn Khalecān.	
		8  Abulfar. ubi sup. p. 301, &c.
9  Al Shahrestani, apud Poc. Spec. p. 194.  Auctor Sharh al Mawākef, apud 
eund. p. 210.		1  Vide Poc. ibid.
2  Al Shahrestani, apud eund. p. 211.

Johni, Ghailān of Damascus, and Jonas al Aswāri broached heterodox opinions 
concerning predestination, and the ascribing of good and evil unto GOD; whose 
opinions were followed by Wāsel Ebn Atā.3  This latter was the scholar of 
Hasan of Basra, in whose school a question being proposed, whether he who had 
committed a grievous sin was to be deemed an infidel or not, the Khārejites 
(who used to come and dispute there) maintaining the affirmative, and the 
orthodox the negative, Wāsel, without waiting his master's decision, withdrew 
abruptly, and began to publish among his fellow-scholars a new opinion of his 
own, to wit, that such a sinner was in a middle state; and he was thereupon 
expelled the school; he and his followers being thenceforth called 
Mótazalites, or Separatists.4
   The several sects which have arisen since this time are variously 
compounded and decompounded of the opinions of four chief sects, the 
Mótazalites, the Sefātians, the Khārejites, and the Shiites.5
   I.  The Mótazalites were the followers of the before-mentioned Wāsel Ebn 
Atā.  As to their chief and general tenets, I.  They entirely rejected all 
eternal attributes of GOD, to avoid the distinction of persons made by the 
Christians; saying that eternity is the proper or formal attribute of his 
essence; that GOD knows by his essence, and not by his knowledge;1 and the 
same they affirmed of his other attributes2 (though all the Mótazalites do not 
understand these words in one sense); and hence this sect were also named 
Moattatlites, from their divesting GOD of his attributes:3 and they went so 
far as to say, that to affirm these attributes is the same thing as to make 
more eternals than one, and that the unity of GOD is inconsistent with such an 
opinion;4 and this was the true doctrine of Wāsel their master, who declared 
that whoever asserted an eternal attribute, asserted there were two GODS.5  
This point of speculation concerning the divine attributes was not ripe at 
first, but was at length brought to maturity by Wāsel's followers, after they 
had read the books of the philosophers.6  2.  They believed the word of GOD to 
have been created in subjecto (as the schoolmen term it), and to consist of 
letters and sound; copies thereof being written in books to express or imitate 
the original.  They also went farther, and affirmed that whatever is created 
in subjecto is also an accident, and liable to perish.7  3.  They denied 
absolute predestination, holding that GOD was not the author of evil, but of 
good only; and that man was a free agent:8 which being properly the opinion of 
the Kadarians, we defer what may be farther said thereof till we come to speak 
of that sect.  On account of this tenet and the first, the Móta-

   3  Idem, and Auctor Sharh al Mawākef, ubi sup.		4  Idem, ibid. p. 
211, 212, and Ebu Khalecān, in Vita Waseli.
   5  Al Shahrestani, who also reduces them to four chief sects, puts the 
Kadarians in the place of the Mótazalites.  Abulfaragius (Hist. Dyn. p. 166) 
reckons six principal sects, adding the Jabarians and the Morgians; and the 
author of Sharh al Mawākef eight, viz., the Mótazalites, the Shiites, the 
Khārejites, the Morgians, the Najarians, the Jabarians, the Moshabbehites, and 
the sect which he calls al Nājia, because that alone will be saved, being 
according to him the sect of the Asharians.  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 209.
   1  Maimonides teaches the same, not as the doctrine of the Mótazalites, but 
his own.  Vide More Nev. l. I, c. 57.		2  Al Shahrestani, apud Poc. 
Spec. p. 214.  Abulfarag, p. 167.		3  Vide Poc. Spec. 224.		4  
Sharh al Mawākef, and al Shahrest. apud Poc. p. 216.  Maimonides (in Proleg ad 
Pirke Aboth. § 8) asserts the same thing.		5  Vide Poc. ibid.
6  Al Shahrest. ibid. p. 215.		7  Abulfarag, and al Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 
217.  See before, Sect. III, p. 112
8  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 240.

zalites look on themselves as the defenders of the unity and justice of GOD.9  
4.  They held that if a professor of the true religion be guilty of a grievous 
sin, and die without repentance, he will be eternally damned, though his 
punishment will be lighter than that of the infidels.10  5.  They denied all 
vision of GOD in paradise by the corporeal eye, and rejected all comparisons 
or similitudes applied to GOD.11
   This sect are said to have been the first inventors of scholastic 
divinity,11 and are subdivided into several inferior sects, amounting, as some 
reckon, to twenty, which mutually brand one another with infidelity:13 the 
most remarkable of them are:-
   I.  The Hodeilians, or followers of Hamdān Abu Hodeil, a Mótazalite doctor, 
who differed something from the common form of expression used by this sect, 
saying that GOD knew by his knowledge, but that his knowledge was his essence; 
and so of the other attributes: which opinion he took from the philosophers, 
who affirm the essence of GOD to be simple and without multiplicity, and that 
his attributes are not posterior or accessory to his essence, or subsisting 
therein, but are his essence itself: and this the more orthodox take to be 
next kin to making distinctions in the deity, which is the thing they so much 
abhor in the Christians.1  As to the Korān's being created, he made some 
distinction; holding the word of GOD to be partly not in subjecto (and 
therefore uncreated), as when he spake the word Kūn, i.e., Fiat, at the 
creation, and partly in subjecto, as the precepts, prohibitions, &c.2  
Marracci3 mentions an opinion of Abu Hodeil's concerning predestination, from 
an Arab writer,4 which being by him expressed in a manner not very 
intelligible, I choose to omit.
   2.  The Jobbāļans, or followers of Abu Ali Mohammed Ebn Abd al Wahhāb, 
surnamed al Jobbāļ, whose meaning when he made use of the common expression of 
the Mótazalites, that "GOD knows by his essence," &c., was, that GOD'S being 
knowing is not an attribute, the same with knowledge, nor such a state as 
rendered his being knowing necessary.5  He held GOD'S word to be created in 
subjecto, as in the preserved table, for example, the memory of Gabriel, 
Mohammed, &c.6  This sect, if Marracci has given the true sense of his author, 
denied that GOD could be seen in paradise without the assistance of corporeal 
eyes; and held that man produced his acts by a power superadded to health of 
body and soundness of limbs; that he who was guilty of a mortal sin was 
neither a believer nor an infidel, but a transgressor (which was the original 
opinion of Wāsel), and if he died in his sins, would be doomed to hell for 
eternity; and that GOD conceals nothing of whatever he knows from his 
   3.  The Hashemians, who were so named from their master Abu Hāshem Abd al 
Salām, the son of Abu Ali al Jabbāļ, and whose tenets nearly agreed with those 
of the preceding sect.8  Abu Hāshem took the Mótazalite form of expression, 
that "GOD knows by his essence," in a different sense from others, supposing 
it to mean that GOD hath or

   9  Al Shahrest. and Sharh al Mawākef. apud Poc, ubi sup. p. 214.	
	10  Marracc. Prodr. ad ref. Alcor. part iii. p. 74.
11  Idem, ibid.		12  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 213, and D'Herbel. Art. 
Motazelah.		13  Auctor al Mawākef, apud Poc. ibid.		1  Al 
Shahrestani, apud Poc. p. 215, 216, 217.		2  Idem, apud eund. p. 217, 
3  In Prodr. part iii. p. 74.		4  Al Shahrest. 		5  Idem, apud Poc. 
Spec. p. 215.		6  Idem, and Auctor al Mawākef, ibid. p. 218.	
	7  Marracci, ubi sup. p. 75, ex al Shahrest.		8  Vide eund. 

is endued with a disposition, which is a known property, or quality, posterior 
or accessory to his existence.1  His followers were so much afraid of making 
GOD the author of evil that they would not allow him to be said to create an 
infidel; because, according to their way of arguing, an infidel is a compound 
of infidelity and man, and GOD is not the creator of infidelity.2  Abu Hāshem, 
and his father Abu Ali al Jobbāļ, were both celebrated for their skill in 
scholastic divinity.3
   4.  The Nodhāmians, or followers of Ibrahim al Nodhām, who having read 
books of philosophy, set up a new sect, and imagining he could not 
sufficiently remove GOD from being the author of evil, without divesting him 
of his power in respect thereto, taught that no power ought to be ascribed to 
GOD concerning evil and rebellious actions: but this he affirmed against the 
opinion of his own disciples, who allowed that GOD could do evil, but did not, 
because of its turpitude.4  Of his opinion as to the Korān's being created we 
have spoken elsewhere.5
   5.  The Hāyetians, so named from Ahmed Ebn Hāyet, who had been of the sect 
of the Nodhāmians, but broached some new notions on reading the philosophers.  
His peculiar opinions were-I.  That Christ was the eternal Word incarnate, and 
took a true and real body, and will judge all creatures in the life to come:6 
he also farther asserted that there are two GODS or Creators-the one eternal, 
viz., the most high GOD, and the other not eternal, viz., Christ7-which 
opinion, though Dr. Pocock urges the same as an argument that he did not 
rightly understand the Christian mysteries8 is not much different from that of 
the Arians and Socinians.  2.  That there is successive transmigration of the 
soul from one body into another; and that the last body will enjoy the reward 
or suffer the punishment due to each soul:9 and, 3.  That GOD will be seen at 
the resurrection, not with the bodily eyes, but those of the understanding.10
   6.  The Jāhedhians, or followers of Amru Ebn Bahr, surnamed al Jāhedh, a 
great doctor of the Mótazalites, and very much admired for the elegance of his 
composures;11 who differed from his brethren in that he imagined the damned 
would not be eternally tormented in hell, but would be changed into the nature 
of fire, and that the fire would of itself attract them, without any necessity 
of their going into it.1  He also taught that if a man believed GOD to be his 
Lord, and Mohammed the apostle of GOD, he became one of the faithful, and was 
obliged to nothing farther.2  His peculiar opinion as to the Korān has been 
taken notice of before.3
   7.  The Mozdārians, who embraced the opinions of Isa Ebn Sobeih al Mozdār, 
and those very absurd ones: for, besides his notions relating to the Korān,4 
he went so directly counter to the opinion of those who abridged GOD of the 
power to do evil, that he affirmed it possible for GOD to be a liar and 
unjust.5  He also pronounced him to

   1  Al Shahrest. apud Poc. p. 215.			2  Idem, ibid. p. 242.	
	3  Ebn Khalecān, in Vitis Eorum.
4  Al Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 241, 242.  Vide Marracc. Prod. part iii. p. 74.	
	5  See before, Sect. III. p. 53.
6  Al Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 218.  Abulfarag, p. 167.		7  Al Shahrest. al 
Mawākef, et Ebn Kossį, apud Poc. ubi sub. p. 219.
8  Vide Poc. ibid		9  Marracc. et al Shahrest. ubi sup.		10  
Marracc. ibid. p. 75.
11  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. Art. Giahedh.		1  Al Shahrest. ubi sup. 
p. 260.			2  Marracc. ubi sup.
3  Sect. III. p. 53.		4  Vide ibid. and p. 52.		5  Al 
Shahrest. apud Poc. p. 241.

be an infidel who thrust himself into the supreme government:6 nay, he went so 
far as to assert men to be infidels while they said "There is no GOD but GOD," 
and even condemned all the rest of mankind as guilty of infidelity; upon which 
Ibrahim Ebn al Sendi asked him whether paradise, whose breadth equals that of 
heaven and earth, was created only for him and two or three more who thought 
as he did? to which it is said he could return no answer.7
   8.  The Basharians, who maintained the tenets of Bashar Ebn Mótamer, the 
master of al Mozdār,8 and a principal man among the Mótazalites.  He differed 
in some things from the general opinion of that sect, carrying man's free 
agency to a great excess, making it even independent: and yet he thought God 
might doom an infant to eternal punishment, but granted he would be unjust in 
so doing.  He taught that God is not always obliged to do that which is best, 
for, if he pleased, he could make all men true believers.  These sectaries 
also held that if a man repent of a mortal sin, and afterwards return to it, 
he will be liable to suffer the punishment due to the former transgression.9
   9.  The Thamamians, who follow Thamāma Ebn Bashar, a chief Mótazalite.  
Their peculiar opinions were-I.  That sinners should remain in hell for ever.  
2.  That free actions have no producing author.  3.  That at the resurrection 
all infidels, idolaters, atheists, Jews, Christians, Magians, and heretics 
shall be reduced to dust.10
   10.  The Kadarians, which is really a more ancient name than that of 
Mótazalites, Mįbad al Johni and his adherents being so called, who disputed 
the doctrine of predestination before Wāsel quitted his master:1 for which 
reason some use the denomination of Kadarians as more extensive than the 
other, and comprehend all the Mótazalites under it.2  This sect deny absolute 
predestination, saying that evil and injustice ought not to be attributed to 
GOD, but to man, who is a free agent, and may therefore be rewarded or 
punished for his actions, which GOD has granted him power either to do or to 
be let alone.3  And hence it is said they are called Kadarians, because they 
deny al Kadr, or GOD'S absolute decree; though others, thinking it not so 
proper to come from Kadr, or Kodrat, i.e., power, because they assert man's 
power to act freely.4  Those, however, who give the name of Kadarians to the 
Mótazalites are their enemies, for they disclaim it, and give it to their 
antagonists the Jabarians, who likewise refuse it as an infamous appellation,5 
because Mohammed is said to have declared the Kadarians to be the Magians of 
his followers.6  But what the opinion of these Kadarians in Mohammed's time 
was, is very uncertain: the Mótazalites say the name belongs to those who 
assert predestination, and make GOD the author of good and evil,7 viz., the 
Jabarians; but all the other Mohammedan sects agree to fix it on the 
Mótazalites, who, they say, are like the Magians in establishing two 
principles, light, or GOD, the author of good; and darkness, or the devil, the 
author of evil: but this cannot absolutely be said of the Mótazalites,

  6  Marracc. ubi sup. p. 75.		7  Al Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 220.	
	8  Poc. Spec. p. 221	9  Marracc. ubi sup.	
10  Idem, ibid.		1  Al Shahrest.		2  Al Firauzab.  Vide Poc. 
Spec. p. 231, 232, and 214.
3  Al Shahrest.  Vide Poc. Spec. p. 235 and 240, &c.		4  Vide Poc. ibid. 
p. 238.		5  Al Motarrezi, al Shahrest.  Vide ibid. p. 232.	
	6  Idem, &c. ibid.		7  Idem, ibid.

for they (at least the generality of them) ascribe men's good deeds to GOD, 
but their evil deeds to themselves; meaning thereby that man has a free 
liberty and power to do either good or evil, and is master of his actions; and 
for this reason it is that the other Mohammedans call them Magians, because 
they assert another author of actions besides GOD.8  And, indeed, it is a 
difficult matter to say what Mohammed's own opinion was in this matter; for on 
the one side the Korān itself is pretty plain for absolute predestination, and 
many sayings of Mohammed are recorded to that purpose,9 and one in particular, 
wherein he introduces Adam and Moses disputing before GOD in this manner: 
"Thou," says Moses, "art Adam; whom GOD created, and animated with the breath 
of life, and caused to be worshipped by the angels, and placed in paradise, 
from whence mankind have been expelled for thy fault:" whereto Adam answered, 
"Thou art Moses; whom GOD chose for his apostle, and entrusted with his word, 
by giving thee the tables of the law, and whom he vouchsafed to admit to 
discourse with himself: how many years dost thou find the law was written 
before I was created?"  Says Moses, "Forty." "And dost thou not find," replied 
Adam, "these words therein: 'And Adam rebelled against his Lord and 
transgressed'?" which Moses confessing, "Dost thou therefore blame me," 
continued he, "for doing that which GOD wrote of me that I should do forty 
years before I was created? nay, for what was decreed concerning me fifty 
thousand years before the creation of heaven and earth?"  In the conclusion of 
which dispute Mohammed declared that Adam had the better of Moses.1  On the 
other side, it is urged in the behalf of the Mótazalites, that Mohammed 
declaring that the Kadarians and Morgians had been cursed by the tongues of 
seventy prophets, and being asked who the Kadarians were, answered, "Those who 
assert that GOD predestinated them to be guilty of rebellion, and yet punishes 
them for it:" al Hasan is also said to have declared, that GOD sent Mohammed 
to the Arabs while they were Kadarians, or Jabarians, and laid their sins upon 
GOD: and to confirm the matter, this sentence of the Korān is quoted:2 "When 
they commit a filthy action, they say, We found our fathers practising the 
same, and GOD hath commanded us so to do: Say, Verily GOD commandeth not 
filthy actions."3
   11.  The Sefātians held the opposite opinion to the Mótazalites in respect 
to the eternal attributes of GOD, which they affirmed; making no distinction 
between the essential attributes and those of operation: and hence they were 
named Sefātians, or Attributists.  Their doctrine was that of the first 
Mohammedans, who were not yet acquainted with these nice distinctions: but 
this sect afterwards introduced another species of declarative attributes, or 
such as were necessarily used in historical narration, as hands, face, eyes, 
&c., which they did not offer to explain, but contented themselves with saying 
they were in the law, and that they called them declarative attributes.4  
However, at length, by giving various explications and interpretations of 
these attributes they divided into many different opinions: some, by taking 
the words

   8  Vide Poc. ibid. p. 233, &c.		9  Vide ibid. p. 237.		1  Ebn 
al Athīr, al Bokhari, apud Poc. p. 236.
2  Cap. 7, p. 107.		3  Al Motarrezi, apud eund. p. 237, 238.	
	4  Al Shahrest. apud Poc. Spec. p. 223.

in the literal sense, fell into the notion of a likeness or similitude between 
GOD and created beings; to which it is said the karaļtes among the Jews, who 
are for the literal interpretation of Moses's law, had shown them the way:5 
others explained them in another manner, saying that no creature was like GOD, 
but that they neither understood nor thought i necessary to explain the 
precise signification of the words which seem to affirm the same of both; it 
being sufficient to believe that GOD hath no companion or similitude.  Of this 
opinion was Malec Ebn Ans, who declared as to the expression of GOD'S sitting 
on his throne, in particular, that though the meaning is known, yet the manner 
is unknown; and that it is necessary to believe it, but heresy to make any 
questions about it.1
   The sects of the Sefātians are:
   I.  The Ashįrians, the followers of Abu'l Hasan al Ashįri, who was first a 
Mótazalite, and the scholar of Abu Ali al Jobbāļ, but disagreeing from his 
master in opinion as to GOD'S being bound (as the Mótazalites assert) to do 
always that which is best or most expedient, left him, and set up a new sect 
of himself.  The occasion of this difference was the putting a case concerning 
three brothers, the first of whom lived in obedience to GOD, the second in 
rebellion against him, and the third died an infant.  Al Jobbāi being asked 
what he thought would become of them, answered, that the first would be 
rewarded in paradise, the second punished in hell, and the third neither 
rewarded nor punished: "But what," objected al Ashįri, "if the third say, O 
LORD, if thou hadst given me longer life, that I might have entered paradise 
with my believing brother, it would have been better for me?" to which al 
Jobbāļ replied, "That GOD would answer, I knew that if thou hadst lived 
longer, thou wouldst have been a wicked person, and therefore cast into hell."  
"Then," retorted al Ashįri, "the second will say, O LORD, why didst thou not 
take me away while I was an infant, as thou didst my brother, that I might not 
have deserved to be punished for my sins, nor to be cast into hell?"  To which 
al Jobbāļ could return no other answer than that GOD prolonged his life to 
give him an opportunity of obtaining the highest degree of perfection, which 
was best for him: but al Ashįri demanding farther, why he did not for the same 
reason grant the other a longer life, to whom it would have been equally 
advantageous, al Jobbāļ was so put to it, that he asked whether the devil 
possessed him?  "No," says al Ashįri, "but the master's ass will not pass the 
bridge;"2 i.e., he is posed.
   The opinions of the Ashįrians were-I.  That they allowed the attributes of 
GOD to be distinct from his essence, yet so as to forbid any comparison to be 
made between GOD and his creatures.3  This was also the opinion of Ahmed Ebn 
Hanbal, and David al Ispahāni, and others, who herein followed Malec Ebn Ans, 
and were so cautious of any assimilation of GOD to created beings, that they 
declared whoever moved his hand while he read these words, "I have created 
with my hand," or "stretched forth his finger," in repeating this saying of 
Mohammed, "The heart of the believer is between two fingers of the

   5  Vide Poc. ibid. p. 224.		1  Vide eund. ibid.		2  Auctor al 
Mawākef, et al Safadi, apud Poc. ubi  sup. p. 230, &c.  Ebn Khalec. in Vita al 
Jabbāļ.		3  Al Shahrest. apud Poc. Spec. p. 230.

Merciful," ought to have his hand and finger cut off;1 and the reasons they 
gave for not explaining any such words were, that it is forbidden in the 
Korān, and that such explications were necessarily founded on conjecture and 
opinion, from which no man ought to speak of the attributes of GOD, because 
the words of the Korān might by that means come to be understood differently 
form the author's meaning: nay, some have been so superstitiously scrupulous 
in this matter as not to allow the words hand, face, and the like, when they 
occur in the Korān, to be rendered into Persian or any other language, but 
require them to be read in the very original words, and this they call the 
safe way.2  2.  As to predestination, they held that GOD hath one eternal will 
which is applied to whatsoever he willeth, both of his own actions and, those 
of men, so far as they are created by him, but not as they are acquired or 
gained by them; that he willeth both their good and their evil, their profit 
and their hurt, and as he willeth and knoweth, he willeth concerning men that 
which he knoweth, and hath commanded the pen to write the same in the 
preserved table: and this is his decree, and eternal immutable counsel and 
purpose.3  They also went so far as to say, that it may be agreeable to the 
way of GOD that man should be commanded what he is not able to perform.4  But 
while they allow man some power, they seem to restrain it to such a power as 
cannot produce anything new; only GOD, say they, so orders his providence that 
he creates, after, or under, and together with every created or new power, an 
action which is ready whenever a man will sit, and sets about it: and this 
action is called Casb, i.e., Acquisition, being in respect to its creation, 
from GOD, but in respect to its being produced, employed, and acquired, from 
man.5  And this being generally esteemed the orthodox opinion, it may not be 
improper farther to explain the same in the words of some other writers.  The 
elective actions of men, says one, fall under the power of GOD alone; nor is 
their own power effectual thereto; but GOD causeth to exist in man power and 
choice; and if there be no impediment, he causeth his action to exist also, 
subject to his power, and joined with that and his choice; which action, as 
created, is to be ascribed to GOD, but as produced, employed, or acquired, to 
man.  So that by the acquisition of an action is properly meant a man's 
joining or connecting the same with his power and will, yet allowing herein no 
impression or influence on the existence thereof, save only that it is subject 
to his power.1  Others, however, who are also on the side of al Ashįri, and 
reputed orthodox, explain the matter in a different manner, and grant the 
impression or influence of the created power of man on his action, and that 
this power is what is called Acquisition.2  But the point will be still 
clearer if we hear a third author, who rehearses the various opinions, or 
explications of the opinion of this sect, in the following words, viz.: Abu'l 
Hasan al Ashįri asserts all the actions of men to be subject to the power of 
GOD, being created by him, and that the power of man hath no influence at all 
on that which he is empowered to do; but that both the power, and what is 
subject thereto, fall under the power of GOD:

   1  Idem, apud eund. p. 228, &c.		2  Vide Poc. ibid.		
	3  Al Shahrest. apud eund. p. 245, &c.
4  Idem, ibid. p. 246.		5  Al Shahrest. apud Poc. p. 245, &c.	
	1  Auctor Sharh al Mawākef, apud eund. p. 247.
2  Al Shahrest. ibid. p. 248.

al Kādi Abu Becr says that the essence or substance of the action is the 
effect of the power of GOD, but its being either an action of obedience, as 
prayer, or an action of disobedience, as fornication, are qualities of the 
action, which proceed from the power of man: Abd'almalec, known by the title 
of Imām al Haramein, Abu'l Hosein of Basra, and other learned men, held that 
the actions of men are effected by the power which GOD hath created in man, 
and that GOD causeth to exist in man both power and will, and that this power 
and will do necessarily produce that which man is empowered to do: and Abu 
Ishāk al Isfarāyeni taught that that which maketh impression, or hath 
influence on an action, is a compound of the power of GOD and the power of 
man.3  The same author observes that their ancestors, perceiving a manifest 
difference between those things which are the effects of the election of man 
and those things which are the necessary effects of inanimate agents, 
destitute both of knowledge and choice, and being at the same time pressed by 
the arguments which prove that GOD is the Creator of all things, and 
consequently of those things which are done by men, to conciliate the matter, 
chose the middle way, asserting actions to proceed from the power of GOD, and 
the acquisition of man; GOD'S way of dealing with his servants being, that 
when man intendeth obedience, GOD createth in him an action of obedience, and 
when he intendeth disobedience, he createth in him an action of disobedience; 
so that man seemeth to be the effective producer of his action, though he 
really be not.1  But this, proceeds the same writer, is again pressed with its 
difficulties, because the very intention of the mind is the work of GOD, so 
that no oman hath any share in the production of his own actions; for which 
reason the ancients disapproved of too nice an inquiry into this point, the 
end of the dispute concerning the same being, for the most part, either the 
taking away of all precepts positive as well as negative, or else the 
associating of a companion with GOD, by introducing some other independent 
agent besides him.  Those, therefore, who would speak more accurately, use 
this form: there is neither compulsion nor free liberty, but the way lies 
between the two; the power and will in man being both created by GOD, though 
the merit or guilt be imputed unto man.  Yet, after all, it is judged the 
safest way to follow the steps of the primitive Moslems, and, avoiding subtle 
disputations and too curious inquiries, to leave the knowledge of this matter 
wholly unto GOD.2  3.  As to mortal sin, the Ashįrians

   3  Auctor Sharh al Tawālea, apud eund. ibid. p. 248, &c.		1  Idem, 
ibid. p. 249, 250.
   2  Idem, ibid. p. 250, 251.  I trust the reader will not be offended if, as 
a farther illustration of what has been said on this subject (in producing of 
which I have purposely kept to the original Mohammedan expressions) I 
transcribe a passage or two from a postscript subjoined to the epistle I have 
quoted above (§4, p. 85), in which the point of free will is treated ex 
professo.  Therein the Moorish author, having mentioned the two opposite 
opinions of the Kadarians, who allow free will, and the Jabarians, who make 
man a necessary agent (the former of which opinions, he says, seems to 
approach nearest to that of the greater part of Christians and of the Jews), 
declares the true opinion to be that of the Sonnites, who assert that man hath 
power and will to choose good and evil, and can moreover know he shall be 
rewarded if he do well, and shall be punished if he do ill; but that he 
depends, notwithstanding, on GOD'S power, and shall be punished if he do ill; 
but that he depends, notwithstanding, on GOD'S power, and willeth, if GOD 
willeth, but not otherwise.  Then he proceeds briefly to refute the two 
extreme opinions, and first to prove that of the Kadarians, though it be 
agreeable to GOD'S justice, inconsistent with his attributes of wisdom and 
power: "Sapientia enim Dei," says he, "comprehendit quicquid fuit et futurum 
est ab ęternitate in finem usque mundi et postea.  Et ita novit ab ęterno 
omnia opera creaturarum, sive bona, sive mala, quę fuerint creata cum potentia 
Dei, et ejus libera et determinate voluntate, sicut ipsi visum fuit.  Denique 
novit eum qui futurus

taught, that if a believer guilty of such sin die without repentance, his 
sentence is to be left with GOD, whether he pardon him out of mercy, or 
whether the prophet intercede for him (according to that saying recorded of 
him, "My intercession shall be employed for those among my people who shall 
have been guilty of grievous crimes"), or whether he punish him in proportion 
to his demerit, and afterwards, through his mercy, admit him into paradise: 
but that it is not to be supposed he will remain for ever in hell with the 
infidels, seeing it is declared that whoever shall have faith in his heart but 
of the weight of an ant, shall be delivered from hell fire.1  And this is 
generally received for the orthodox doctrine in this point, and is 
diametrically opposite to that of the Mótazalites.
   These were the more rational Sefātians, but the ignorant part of them, not 
knowing how otherwise to explain the expressions of the Korān relating to the 
declarative attributes, fell into most gross and

erat malus, et tamen creavit: neque negari potest quin, si ipsi libuisset, 
potuisset omnes creare bonos: placuit tamen Deo creare bonos et malos, cłm Deo 
soli sit absoluta et libera voluntas, et perfecta electio, et non homini.  Ita 
enim Salomon in suis proverbiis dixit. Vitam et mortem, bonum et malum, 
divitias et paupertatem, esse et venire ą Deo.  Christiani etiam dicunt S. 
Paulum dixisse in suis epistolis; Dicet etiam lutum figulo, quare facis unum 
vas ad honorem, et aliud vas ad contumeliam?  Cum igitur miser homo fuerit 
creatus ą voluntate Dei et potentia, nihil aliud potest tribui ipsi quąm ipse 
sensus cognoscendi et sentiendi an bene vel male faciat.  Quę unica causa (id 
est, sensus cognoscendi) erit ejus glorię vel ponę causa: per talem enim 
sensum novit quid boni vel mali adversus Dei pręcepta fecerit."  The opinion 
of the Jabarians, on the other hand, he rejects as contrary to man's 
consciousness of his own power and choice, and inconsistent with GOD'S 
justice, and his having given mankind laws, to the observing or transgressing 
of which he was annexed rewards and punishments.  After this he proceeds to 
explain the third opinion in the following words: "Tertia opinio Zunis (i.e., 
Sonnitarum) quę vera est, affirmat homini potesttatem esse, sed limitatem ą 
sua causa, id est, dependentem ą Dei potentia et voluntate, et proper illam 
cognitionem qua deliberat benč vel malč facere, esse dignum pona vel pręmio.  
Manifestum est in ęternitate non fuisse aliam potentiam pręter Dei nostri 
omnipotentis, e cujus potentia pendebant omnia possibilia, id est, quę 
poterant esse, cum ab ipso fuerint creata.  Sapientia verņ Dei novit etiam quę 
non sunt futura; et potentia ejus, etsi non creaverit ea, potuit tamen, si ita 
Deo placuisset.  Ita novit sapientia Dei quę erant impossibilia, id est, quę 
non poterant esse; quę tamen nullo pacto pendent ab ejus potentia: ab ejus 
enim potentia mulla pendent nisi possibilia.-Dicimus enim ą Dei potentia non 
pendere creare Deum alium ipsi similem, nec creare aliquid quod moveatur et 
quiescat simul eodem tempore, cłm hęc sint ex impossibilibus: comprehendit 
tamen suā sapientiā tale aliquid non pendere ab ejus potentiā.-A potentiā 
igitur Dei pendet solłm quod potest esse, et possibile est esse; quę semper 
parata est dare esse possibilibus.  Et si hoc penitus cognoscamus,cognoscemus 
pariter omne quod est, seu futurum est, sive sint opera nostra, sive quidvis 
aliud, pendere ą sola potentia Dei.  Et hoc non privatim intelligitur, sed in 
genere de omni eo quod est et movetur, sive in colis sive in terrā; et nec 
aliquā potentiā potest impediri Dei potentia, cłm nulla alia potentia absoluta 
sit, pręter Dei; potentia verņ nostra non est ą se, nisi ą Dei potentia: et 
cum potentia nostra dicitur esse a causa sua, ideo dicimus potentiam nostram 
esse straminis comparatam cum potentia Dei: eo enim modo quo stramen movetur ą 
motu maris, ita nostra potentia et voluntas ą Dei potentia.  Itaque Dei 
potentia semper est parata etiam ad occidendum aliquem; ut si quis hominem 
occidat, non dicimus potentiā hominis id factum, sed ęterna potentia Dei: 
error enim  est id tribuere potentię hominis.  Potentia enim Dei, cłm semper 
sit parata, et ante ipsum hominem, ad occidendum; si solā hominis potentiā id 
factum esse diceremus, et moreretur, potentia sanč Dei (quę antč erat) jam ibi 
esset frustra: quia post mortem non potest potentia Dei eum iterum occidere; 
ex quo sequeretur potentiam Dei impediri ą potentia hominis, et potentiam 
hominis anteire et antecellere potentiam Dei; quod est absurdum et 
impossibile.  Igitur Deus est qui operatur ęternā suā potentiā: si verņ homini 
injiciatur culpa, sive in tali homicidio, sive in aliis, hoc est quantłm ad 
pręcepta et legem.  Homini tribuitur solłm opus externč, et ejus electio, quę 
est a voluntate ejus et potentia; non verņ internč.-Hoc est punctum illud 
indivisibile et secretum, quod ą paucissimis capitur, ut sapientissimus Sidi 
Abo Hamet Elgaceli (i.e., Dominus Abu Hāmed al Ghazāli) affirmat (cujus 
spiritui Deus concedat gloriam, Amen!) Sequentibus verbis: Ita abditum et 
profundum et abstrusum est intelligere punctum illud Liberi Arbitrii, ut neque 
characteres ad scribendum, neque ullę rationes ad exprimendum sufficiant, et 
omnes, quotquot de hac re locuti sunt, hęserunt confusi in ripa tanti et tam 
spaciosi maris."
   1  Al Shahrest. apud Poc. Spec. p. 258.

absurd opinions, making GOD corporeal, and like created beings.2  Such were-
   2.  The Moshabbehites, or Assimilators; who allowed a resemblance between 
GOD and his creatures,3 supposing him to be a figure composed of members or 
parts, either spiritual or corporeal, and capable of local motion, of ascent 
and descent, &c.1  Some of this sect inclined to the opinion of the Holūlians, 
who believed that the divine nature might be united with the human in the same 
person; for they granted it possible that GOD might appear in a human form, as 
Gabriel did: and to confirm their opinion they allege Mohammed's words, that 
he saw his LORD in a most beautiful form, and Moses talking with GOD face to 
face.2  And
   3.  The Kerāmians, or followers of Mohammed Ebn Kerām, called also 
Mojassemians, or Corporalists; who not only admitted a resemblance between GOD 
and created beings, but declared GOD to be corporeal.3  The more sober among 
them, indeed, when they applied the word body to GOD, would be understood to 
mean, that he is a self-subsisting being, which with them is the definition of 
body: but yet some of them affirmed him to be finite, and circumscribed, 
either on all sides, or on some only (as beneath, for example), according to 
different opinions;4 and others allowed that he might be felt by the hand, and 
seen by the eye.  Nay, one David al Jawāri went so far as to say, that his 
deity was  body composed of flesh and blood, and that he had members, as 
hands, feet, a head, a tongue, eyes, and ears; but that he was a body, 
however, not like other bodies, neither was he like to any created being: he 
is also said farther to have affirmed that from the crown of the head to the 
breast he was hollow, and from the breast downward solid, and that he had 
black curled hair.5  These most blasphemous and monstrous notions were the 
consequence of the literal acceptation of those passages in the Korān which 
figuratively attribute corporeal actions to GOD, and of the words of Mohammed, 
when he said, that GOD created man in his own image, and that himself had felt 
the fingers of GOD, which he laid on his back, to be cold: besides which, this 
sect are charged with fathering on their prophet a great number of spurious 
and forged traditions to support their opinion, the greater part whereof they 
borrowed from the Jews, who are accused as naturally prone to assimilate GOD 
to men, so that they describe him as weeping for Noah's flood till his eyes 
were sore.6  and, indeed, though we grant the Jews may have imposed on 
Mohammed and his followers in many instances, and told them as solemn truths 
things which themselves believed not or had invented, yet many expressions of 
this kind are to be found in their writings; as when they introduce GOD 
roaring like a lion at every watch of the night, and crying, "Alas! that I 
have laid waste my house, and suffered my temple to be burnt, and sent my 
children into banishment among the heathen," &c.1
   4.  The jabarians-who are the direct opponents of the Kadarians-denying 
free agency in man, and ascribing his actions wholly unto

   2  Vide Poc. ibid. p. 255, &c.  Abulfar. p. 167, &c.		3  Al 
Mawākef, apud Poc. ibid.		1  Al Shahrest. apud eund. ibid. p. 226.	
	2  Vide Marracc. Prodr. part iii. p. 76.		3  Al Shahrest. ubi sup.
		4  Idem, ibid. p. 225.
5  Idem, ibid. p. 226, 227.		6  Idem, ibid. p. 227, 228.	1  Talm.  
Berachoth, c. I.  Vide Poc. ubi supra, p 228.

GOD.2  They take their denomination from al Jabr, which signifies necessity, 
or compulsion; because they hold man to be necessarily and inevitably 
constrained to act as he does, by force of GOD'S eternal and immutable 
decree.3  This sect is distinguished into several species; some being more 
rigid and extreme in their opinion, who are thence called pure Jabarians, and 
others more moderate, who are therefore called middle Jabarians.  The former 
will not allow men to be said either to act, or to have any power at all, 
either operative or acquiring; asserting that man can do nothing, but produces 
all his actions by necessity, having neither power, nor will, nor choice, any 
more than an inanimate agent: they also declare that rewarding and punishing 
are also the effects of necessity; and the same they say of the imposing of 
commands.  This was the doctrine of the Jahmians, the followers of Jahm Ebn 
Safwān, who likewise held that paradise and hell will vanish, or be 
annihilated, after those who are destined thereto respectively shall have 
entered them, so that at last there will remain no existing being besides 
GOD;4 supposing those words of the Korān which declare that the inhabitants of 
paradise and of hell shall remain therein for ever, to be hyperbolical only, 
and intended for corroboration, and not to denote an eternal duration in 
reality.5  The moderate Jabarians are those who ascribe some power to man, but 
such a power as hath no influence on the action: for as to those who grant the 
power of man to have a certain influence on the action, which influence is 
called Acquisition, some6 will not admit them to be called Jabarians; though 
others reckon those also to be called middle Jabarians, and to contend for the 
middle opinion between absolute necessity and absolute liberty, who attribute 
to man acquisition, or concurrence in producing the action, whereby he gaineth 
commendation or blame (yet without admitting it to have any influence on the 
action), and, therefore, make the Ashįrians a branch of this sect.7  Having 
again mentioned the term Acquisition, we may, perhaps, have a clearer idea of 
what the Mohammedans mean thereby, when told, that it is defined to be an 
action directed to the obtaining of profit, or the removing of hurt, and for 
that reason never applied to any action of GOD, who acquireth to himself 
neither profit nor hurt.1  Of the middle or moderate Jabarians were the 
Najārians and the Derārians.  The Najārians were the adherents of al Hasan Ebn 
Mohammed al Najār, who taught that GOD was he who created the actions of men, 
both good and bad, and that man acquired them, and also that man's power had 
an influence on the action, or a certain co-operation, which he called 
acquisition; and herein he agreed with al Ashįri.2  The Derārians were the 
disciples of Derār Ebn Amru, who held also that men's actions are really 
created by GOD, and that man really acquired them.3  The Jabarians also say, 
that GOD is absolute Lord of his creatures, and may deal with them according 
to his own pleasure, without rendering account to any, and that if he should 
admit all men, without distinction, into paradise, it would be no 
impartiality, or if he should cast them all into hell it would

   2  Vide Abulfarag, p. 168.		3  Al Shahrest. al Mawākef, et Ebn al 
Kossį, apud Poc. ibid. p. 238, &c.		4  Al Shahrest. al Motarezzi, et Ebn 
al Kossį, apud eund. p. 239, 243, &c.		5  Idem, ibid. p. 260.	6  Al 
7  Ebn al Kossį, et al Mawākef.		1  Ebn al Kossį apud Poc. ubi sup. 
p. 240.	2  Al Shahrest. apud eund. p. 245.
3  Idem, ibid.

be no injustice.4  And in this particular, likewise, they agree with the 
Ashįrians, who assert the same,5 and say that reward is a favour from GOD, and 
punishment a piece of justice; obedience being by them considered as a sign 
only of future reward, and transgression as a sign of future punishment.6
   5.  The Morgians; who are said to be derived from the Jabarians.7  These 
teach that the judgment of every true believer, who hath been guilty of a 
grievous sin, will be deferred till the resurrection; for which reason they 
pass no sentence on him in this world, either of absolution or condemnation.  
They also hold that disobedience with faith hurteth not; and that, on the 
other hand, obedience with infidelity profiteth not.1  As to the reason of 
their name the learned differ, because of the different significations of its 
root, each of which they accommodate to some opinion of the sect.  Some think 
them so called because they postpone works to intention, that is, esteem works 
to be inferior in degree to intention and profession of the faith;2 others, 
because they allow hope, by asserting that disobedience with faith hurteth 
not, &c.; others take the reason of the name to be, their deferring the 
sentence of the heinous sinner till the resurrection;3 and others, their 
degrading of Ali, or removing him from the first degree to the fourth:4 for 
the Morgians, in some points relating to the office of Imām, agree with the 
Khārejites, the Kadarians, or the Jabarians, are distinguished as Morgians of 
those sects, and the fourth is that of the pure Morgians; which last species 
is again subdivided into five others.5  The opinions of Mokātel and Bashar, 
both of a sect of the Morgians called Thaubanians, should not be omitted.  The 
former asserted that disobedience hurts not him who professes the unity of 
GOD, and is endued with faith; and that no true believer shall be cast into 
hell: he also taught that GOD will surely forgive all crimes besides 
infidelity; and that a disobedient believer will be punished, at the day of 
resurrection, on the bridge6 laid over the midst of hell, where the flames of 
hell fire shall catch hold on him, and torment him in proportion to his 
disobedience, and that he shall then be admitted into paradise.7  The latter 
held that if GOD do cast the believers guilty of grievous sins into hell, yet 
they will be delivered thence after they shall have been sufficiently 
punished; but that it is neither possible nor consistent with justice that

   4  Abulfarag, p. 168, &c.		5  Al Shahrestani, ubi sup. p. 252, &c.
   6  Sharh al Tawālea, ibid.  To the same effect writes the Moorish author 
quotes above, from whom I will venture to transcribe the following passage, 
with which he concludes his Discourse on Freewill.  "Intellectus ferč lumine 
naturali novit Deum esse rectum judicem et justum, qui non aliter afficit 
creaturam quąm juste: etiam Deum esse absolutum Dominum, et hanc orbis 
machinam esse ejus, et ab eo creatam; Deum mullis debere rationem reddere, cłm 
quicquid agat, agat jure proprio sibi: et ita absolute poterit afficere pręmio 
vel pona quem vult, cłm omnis creatura sit ejus, nec facit cuiquam injuriam, 
etsi eam tormentis et ponis ęternis afficiat: plus enim boni et commodi 
accepit creatura quando accepit esse a suo creatore, quąm incommodi et damni 
quando ab eo damnata est et affecta tormentis et ponis.  Hoc autem 
intelligitur si Deus absolute id faceret.  Quando enim Deus, pietate et 
misericordia motus, eligit aliquos ut ipsi serviant, Dominus Deus gratiā suā 
id facit ex infinitā bonitate; et quando aliquos derelingquit, et ponis et 
tormentis afficit, ex justitia et rectitudine.  Et tandem dicimł omnes ponas 
esse justas quę a Deo Veniunt, et nostrā tantłm culpā, et omnia bona esse ą 
pietate et misericordia ejus infinita."		7  Al Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 
256.		1  Abulfar. p. 169.
2  Al Firauz.		3  Ebn al Athīr, al Motarrezi.		4  Al 
Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 254, &c.		5  Idem, ibid.		6  See 
before, Sect. IV. p. 71.		7  al Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 257.

they should remain therein for ever; which, as has been observed, was the 
opinion of al Ashįri.
   III.  The Khārejites are they who depart or revolt from the lawful prince 
established by public consent; and thence comes their name, which signifies 
revolters or rebels.8  The first who were so called were twelve thousand men 
who revolted from Ali, after they had fought under him at the battle of 
Seffein, taking offence at his submitting the decision of his right to the 
Khalīfat, which Moāwiyah disputed with him, to arbitration, though they 
themselves had first obliged him to it.1 These were also called Mohakkemites, 
or Judiciarians; because the reason which they gave for their revolt was, that 
Ali had referred a matter concerning the religion of GOD to the judgment of 
men, whereas the judgment, in such case, belonged only unto GOD.2  The heresy 
of the Khārejites consisted chiefly in two things.  I.  In that they affirmed 
a man might be promoted to the dignity of the Imām, or prince, though he was 
not of the tribe of Koreish, nor even a freeman, provided he was a just and 
pious person, and endued with the other requisite qualifications; and also 
held that if the Imām turned aside from the truth, he might be put to death or 
deposed; and that there was no absolute necessity for any Imām at all in the 
world.  2.  In that they charged Ali with sin, for having left an affair to 
the judgment of men, which ought to have been determined by GOD alone; and 
went so far as to declare him guilty of infidelity, and to curse him on that 
account.3  In the 38th year of the Hejra, which was the year following the 
revolt, all these Khārejites who persisted in their rebellion, to the number 
of four thousand, were cut to pieces by Ali, and, as several historians4 
write, even to a man: but others say nine of them escaped, and that two fled 
into Omān, two into Kermān, two into Sejestān, two into Mesopotamia, and one 
to Tel Mawrūn; and that these propagated their heresy in those places, the 
same remaining there to this day.5  The principal sects of the Khārejites, 
besides the Mohakkemites above mentioned, are six; which, though they greatly 
differ among themselves in other matters, yet agree in these, viz., that they 
absolutely reject Othmān and Ali, preferring the doing of this to the greatest 
obedience, and allowing marriages to be contracted on no other terms; that 
they account those who are guilty of grievous sins to be infidels; and that 
they hold it necessary to resist the Imām when he transgresses the law.  One 
sect of them deserves more particular notice, viz.-
   The Waļdians, so called from al Waļd, which signifies the threats denounced 
by GOD against the wicked.  These are the antagonists of the Morgians, and 
assert that he who is guilty of a grievous sin ought to be declared an infidel 
or apostate, and will be eternally punished in hell, though he were a true 
believer:6 which opinion of theirs, as has been observed, occasioned the first 
rise of the Mótazalites.  One Jaafar Ebn Mobashshar, of the sect of the 
Nodhāmians, was yet more severe than the Waļdians, pronouncing him to be a 
reprobate and an apostate who steals but a grain of corn.1

   8  Idem, ibid. p. 269.		1  See Ockley's Hist. of the Sarac. vol. 
i. p. 60, &c.		2  Al Shahrest. ubi sup. p. 270.
3  Idem, ibid.		4  Abulfeda, al Jannābi, Elmacinus, p. 40.	
	5  Al Shahrestani.  See Ockley's Hist. of the Saracens, ubi sup. p. 63.	
	6  Abulfar. p. 169.  Al Shahrest. apud Poc. Spec. p. 256.		1  
Vide Poc. ibid. p. 257

   IV. The Shiites are the opponents of the Khārejites: their name properly 
signifies sectaries or adherents in general, but is peculiarly used to denote 
those of Ali Ebn Tāleb; who maintain him to be lawful Khalīf and Imām, and 
that the supreme authority, both in spirituals and temporals, of right belongs 
to his descendants, notwithstanding they may be deprived of it by the 
injustice of others, or their own fear.  They also teach that the office of 
Imām is not a common thing, depending on the will of the vulgar, so that they 
may set up whom they please; but a fundamental affair of religion, and an 
article which the prophet could not have neglected, or left to the fancy of 
the common people:2 nay, some, thence called Imāmians, go so far as to assert, 
that religion consists solely in the knowledge of the true Imām.3  The 
principal sects of the Shiites are five, which are subdivided into an almost 
innumerable number; so that some understand Mohammed's prophecy of the seventy 
odd sects, of the Shiites only.  Their general opinions are-I.  That the 
peculiar designation of the Imām, and the testimonies of the Korān and 
Mohammed concerning him, are necessary points.  2.  That the Imāms ought 
necessarily to keep themselves free from light sins as well as more grievous.  
3.  That every one ought publicly to declare who it is that he adheres to, and 
from whom he separates himself, by word, deed, and engagement; and that herein 
there should be no dissimulation.  But in this last point some of the 
Zeidians, a sect so named from Zeid, the son of Ali surnamed Zein al ābedīn, 
and great-grandson of Ali, dissented from the rest of the Shiites.4  As to 
other articles, wherein they agreed not, some of them came pretty near to the 
notions of the Mótazalites, others to those of the Moshabbehites, and others 
to those of the Sonnites.5  Among the latter of these Mohammed al Bāker, 
another son of Zein al ābedīn's, seems to claim a place: for his opinion as to 
the will of GOD was, that GOD willeth something in us, and something from us, 
and that what he willeth from us he hath revealed to us; for which reason he 
thought it preposterous that we should employ our thoughts about those things 
which GOD willeth in us, and neglect those which he willeth from us: and as to 
GOD'S decree, he held that the way lay in the middle, and that there was 
neither compulsion nor free liberty.1  A tenet of the Khattābians, or 
disciples of one Abu'l Khattab, is too peculiar to be omitted.  These 
maintained paradise to be no other than the pleasures of this world, and hell 
fire to be the pains thereof, and that the world will never decay: which 
proposition being first laid down, it is no wonder they went farther, and 
declared it lawful to indulge themselves in drinking wine and whoring, and to 
do other things forbidden by the law, and also to omit doing the things 
commanded by the law.2
   Many of the Shiites carried their veneration for Ali and his descendants so 
far, that they transgressed all bounds of reason and decency; though some of 
them were less extravagant than others.  The Gholāļtes, who had their name 
from their excessive zeal for their Imāms, were so highly transported 
therewith, that they raised them above the degree of created beings, and 
attributed divine properties to them; trans-

   2  Al Shahrest. ibid. p. 261.  Abulfar. p. 169.		3  Al Shahrest. 
ibid. p. 262.		4  Idem, ibid.  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. Art. 
Schiah.		5  Vide Poc. ibid.			1  Al Shahrest. ibid. p. 
263.		2  Idem. et Ebn al Kossį, ibid. p. 260, &c.

gressing on either hand, by deifying of mortal men, and by making GOD 
corporeal: for one while they liken one of their Imāms to GOD, and another 
while they liken GOD to a creature.3  The sects of these are various, and have 
various appellations in different countries.  Abd'allah Ebn Saba (who had been 
a Jew, and had asserted the same thing of Joshua the son of Nun) was the 
ringleader of one of them.  This man gave the following salutation to Ali, 
viz., "Thou art Thou," i.e., Thou art GOD: and hereupon the Gholāļtes became 
divided into several species; some maintaining the same thing, or something 
like it, of Ali, and others of some of one of his descendants; affirming that 
he was not dead, but would return again in the clouds, and fill the earth with 
justice.4  But howmuchsoever they disagreed in other things, they unanimously 
held a metempsychosis, and what they call al Holūl, or the descent of GOD on 
his creatures; meaning thereby that GOD is present in every place, and speaks 
with every tongue, and appears in some individual person:5 and hence some of 
them asserted their Imāms to be prophets, and at length gods.6  The Nosairians 
and the Ishākians taught that spiritual substances appear in grosser bodies; 
and that the angels and the devil have appeared in this manner.  They also 
assert that GOD hath appeared in this manner.  They also assert that GOD hath 
appeared in the form of certain men; and since, after Mohammed, there hath 
been no man more excellent than Ali, and, after him, his sons have excelled 
all other men, that GOD hath appeared in their form, spoken with their tongue, 
and made use of their hands; for which reason, say they, we attribute divinity 
to them.1  And to support these blasphemies, they tell several miraculous 
things of Ali, as his moving the gates of Khaibar,2 which they urge as a plain 
proof that he was endued with a particle of divinity and with sovereign power, 
and that he was the person in whose form GOD appeared, with whose hands he 
created all things, and with whose tongue he published his commands; and 
therefore they say he was in being before the creation of heaven and earth.3  
In so impious a manner do they seem to wrest those things which are said in 
scripture of CHRIST by applying them to Ali.  These extravagant fancies of the 
Shiites, however, in making their Imāms in laying claim thereto, are so far 
from being peculiar to this sect, that most of the other Mohammedan sects are 
tainted with the same madness; there being many found among them, and among 
the Sūfis especially, who pretend to be nearly related to heaven, and who 
boast of strange revelations before the credulous people.4  It may not be 
amiss to hear what al Ghazāli has written on this occasion.  "Matters are come 
to that pass," says he, "that some boast of an union with GOD, and of 
discoursing familiarly with him, without the interposition of a veil, saying, 
'It hath been thus said to us,' and 'We have thus spoken;' affecting to 
imitate Hosein al Hallāj, who was put to death for some words of this kind 
uttered by him, he having said (as was proved by credible witnesses), 'I am 
the Truth,'5 or Abu Yazīd al Bastāmi, of whom it is related that he often used 
the expression,

   3  Idem, ibid.		4  Idem, ibid. p. 264.  Vide Marracc. Prodr. part iii. 
p. 80, &c.		5  Idem, ibid. p. 265.	
6  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Or. Art. Hakem Beamrillah.		1  Idem, ibid. 
Abulfar. p. 169.	2  See Prid. Life of Mah. p. 93.	
3  Al Shah. ubi sup. p. 266.			4  Poc. Spec. p. 267.	5  Vide 
D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. Art. Hallage.

'Sobhāni,' i.e., 'Praise be unto me!'6  But this way of talking is the cause 
of great mischief among the common people; insomuch that husbandmen, 
neglecting the tillage of their land, have pretended to the like privileges; 
nature being tickled with discourses of this kind, which furnish men with an 
excuse for leaving their occupations, under pretence of purifying their souls, 
and attaining I know not what degrees and conditions.  Nor is there anything 
to hinder the most stupid fellows from forming the like pretensions and 
catching at such vain expressions: for whenever what they say is denied to be 
true, they fail not to reply that our unbelief proceeds from learning and 
logic; affirming learning to be a veil, and logic the work of the mind; 
wherein what they tell us appears only within, being discovered by the light 
of truth.  But this is that truth the sparks whereof have flown into several 
countries and occasioned great mischiefs; so that it is more for the advantage 
of GOD'S true religion to put to death one of those who utter such things than 
to bestow life on ten others."1
   Thus far have we treated of the chief sects among the Mohammedans of the 
first ages, omitting to say anything of the more modern sects, because the 
same are taken little or no notice of by their own writers, and would be of no 
use to our present design.2  It may be proper, however, to mention a word or 
two of the great schism at this day subsisting between the Sonnites and the 
Shiites, or partisans of Ali, and maintained on either side with implacable 
hatred and furious zeal.  Though the difference arose at first on a political 
occasion, it has, notwithstanding, been so well improved by additional 
circumstances and the spirit of contradiction, that each party detest and 
anathematize the other as abominable heretics, and farther from the truth than 
either the Christians or the Jews.3  The chief points wherein they differ are-
I.  That the Shiites reject Abu Becr, Omar, and Othmān, the three first 
Khalīfs, as usurpers and intruders; whereas the Sonnites acknowledge and 
respect them as rightful Imāms.  2.  The Shiites prefer Ali to Mohammed, or, 
at least, esteem them both equal; but the Sonnites admit neither Ali nor any 
of the prophets to be equal to Mohammed.  3.  The Sonnites charge the Shiites 
with corrupting the Korān and neglecting its precepts, and the Shiites retort 
the same charge on the Sonnites.  4.  The Sonnites receive the Sonna, or book 
of traditions of their prophet, as of canonical authority; whereas the Shiites 
reject it as apocryphal and unworthy of credit.  And to these disputes, and 
some others of less moment, is principally owing to the antipathy which has 
long reigned between the Turks, who are Sunnites, and the Persians, who are of 
the sect of Ali.  It seems strange that Spinosa, had he known of no other 
schism among the Mohammedans, should yet never have heard of one so publicly 
notorious as this between the Turks and Persians; but it is plain he did not, 
or he would never have assigned it as the reason of his preferring the order 
of the Mohammedan church to that of the Roman, that there have arisen no 
schisms in the former since its birth.4

   6  Vide Ibid. Art. Bastham.		1  Al Ghazāli, apud Poc. ubi sup.	
	2  The reader may meet with some account of them in Ricaut's State of 
the Ottom. Empire, l. 2, c. 12.		3  Vide ibid. c. 10, and Chardin, 
Voy. de Perse, t. ii. p. 169, 170, &c.
   4  The words of the Spinosa are: "Ordinem Romanę ecclesię-politicum et 
plurimis lucrosum esse fateor; nec ad decipiendam plebem, et hominum animos 
coercendrum commo-

   As success in any project seldom fails to draw in imitators, Mohammed's 
having raised himself to such a degree of power and reputation by acting the 
prophet, induced others to imagine they might arrive at the same height by the 
same means.  His most considerable competitors in the prophetic office were 
Moseilama and al Aswad, whom the Mohammedans usually call the two liars.
   The former was of the tribe of Honeifa, who inhabited the province of 
Yamāma, and a principal man among them.  He headed an embassy sent by his 
tribe to Mohammed in the ninth year of the Hejra, and professed himself a 
Moslem:1 but on his return home, considering that he might possibly share with 
Mohammed in his power, the next year he set up for a prophet also, pretending 
to be joined with him the commission to recall mankind from idolatry to the 
worship of the true GOD;2 and he published written revelations, in imitation 
of the Korān, of which Abulfargius3 has preserved the following passage, viz.: 
"now hath GOD been gracious unto her that was with child, and hath brought 
forth from her the soul, which runneth between the peritonęum and the bowels."  
Moseilama, having formed a considerable party among those of Honeifa, began to 
think himself upon equal terms with Mohammed, and sent him a letter, offering 
to go halves with him,4 in these words: "From Moseilama the apostle of GOD, to 
Mohammed the apostle of GOD.  Now let the earth be half mine, and half thine."  
But Mohammed, thinking himself too well established to need a partner, wrote 
him this answer: "From Mohammed the apostle of GOD, to Moseilama the liar.  
The earth is GOD'S: he giveth the same for inheritance unto such of his 
servants as he pleaseth; and the happy issue shall attend those who fear 
him."5  During the few months which Mohammed lived after this revolt, 
Moseilama rather gained than lost ground, and grew very formidable; but Abu 
Becr, his successor, in the eleventh year of the Hejra, sent a great army 
against him, under the command of that consummate general, Khāled Ebn al 
Walīd, who engaged Moseilama in a bloody battle, wherein the false prophet, 
happening to be slain by Wahsha, the negro slave who had killed Hamza at Ohod, 
and by the same lance,6 the Moslems gained an entire victory, ten thousand of 
the apostates being left dead on the spot, and the rest returning to 
   Al Aswad, whose name was Aihala, was of the tribe of Ans, and governed that 
and the other tribes of Arabs descended from Madhhaj.1  This man was likewise 
an apostate from Mohammedism, and set up for himself the very year that 
Mohammed died.2  He was surnamed Dhu'lhemār, or the master of the ass, because 
he used frequently to say, "The master of the ass is coming unto me;"3 and 
pretended to receive his revelations from two angels, named Sohaik and 
Shoraik.4  Having a good hand at legerdemain, and a smooth tongue, he gained 
mightily on the multitude by the strange feats which he showed them,

diorem isto crederem, ni ordo Mahumedanę ecclesię esset, qui longč eundem 
antecellit.  Nam ą quo tempore hęc superstitio incepit, nulla in eorum 
ecclesia schismata orta sunt."  Opera Posth. p. 613.		1  Abulfed. p. 
160.		2  Idem, Elmac. p. 9.
3  Hist. Dynast. p. 164.		4  Abulfed. ubi sup.		5  Al 
Beidāwi, in Kor. c. 5.		6  Abulfed. ubi sup.
7 Idem, ibid. Abulfarag, p. 173.  Elmac. p. 16, &c.  See Ockley's Hist. of the 
Saracens, vol. i. p. 15, &c.		1  Al Soheili, apud Gagnier. in not. ad 
Abulf. Vit. Moh. p. 158.		2  Elmac. p. 9.		3  Abulfed ubi 
sup.		4  Al Soheili, ubi sup.

and the eloquence of his discourse:5 by these means he greatly increased his 
power, and having made himself master of Najrān, and the territory of al 
Tāyef,6 on the death of Badhān, the governor of Yaman for Mohammed, he seized 
that province also, killing Shahr, the son of Badhān, and taking to wife his 
widow, whose father, the uncle of Firūz the Deilamite, he had also slain.7  
These news being brought to Mohammed, he sent to his friends, and to those of 
Hamdān, a party of whom, conspiring with Kais Ebn Abd'al Yaghūth, who bore Al 
Aswad a grudge, and with Firūz, and al Aswad's wife, broke by night into his 
house, where Firūz surprised him and cut off his head.  While he was 
dispatching he roared like a bull; at which his guards came to the chamber 
door, but were sent away by his wife, who told them the prophet was only 
agitated by the divine inspiration.  This was done the very night before 
Mohammed died.  The next morning the conspirators caused the following 
proclamation to be made, viz.: "I bear witness that Mohammed is the apostle of 
GOD, and that Aihala is a liar;" and letters were immediately sent away to 
Mohammed, with an account of what had been done: but a messenger from heaven 
outstripped them, and acquainted the prophet with the news, which he imparted 
to his companions but a little before his death; the letters themselves not 
arriving till Abu Becr was chosen Khalīf.  It is said that Mohammed, on this 
occasion, told those who attended him that before the day of judgment thirty 
more impostors, besides Moseilama and al Aswad, should appear, and every one 
of them set up for a prophet.  The whole time, from the beginning of al 
Aswad's rebellion to his death, was about four months.8
   In the same eleventh year of the Hejra, but after the death of Mohammed, as 
seems most probable, Toleiha Ebn Khowailed set up for a prophet, and Sejāj 
Bint al Mondar1 for a prophetess.
   Toleiha was of the tribe of Asad, which adhered to him, together with great 
numbers of the tribes of Ghatfān and Tay.  Against them likewise was Khāled 
sent, who engaged and put them to flight, obliging Toleiha, with his shattered 
troops, to retire into Syria, where he stayed till the death of Abu Becr: then 
he went to Omar and embraced Mohammedism in his presence, and, having taken 
the oath of fidelity to him, returned to his own country and people.2
   Sejāj, surnamed Omm Sāder, was of the tribe of Tamīm, and the wife of Abu 
Cahdala, a soothsayer of Yamāma.  She was followed not only by those of her 
own tribe, but by several others.  Thinking a prophet the most proper husband 
for her, she went to Moseilama, and married him; but after she had stayed with 
him three days, she left him and returned home.3  What became of her 
afterwards I do not find.  Ebn Shohnah has given us part of the conversation 
which passed at the interview between those two pretenders to inspiration; but 
the same is a little too immodest to be translated.
   In succeeding ages several impostors from time to time started up most of 
whom quickly came to nothing: but some made a considerable figure, and 
propagated sects which continued long after their decease.

   5  Abulfed. ubi sup.			6  Idem, et Elmac. ubi sup.		7  
Idem, al Jannābi, ubi sup.		8  Idem, ibid.		1  Ebn Shohnah and 
Elmacinus call her the daughter of al Hareth.		2  Elmac, p. 16, al 
Beidāwi, in Kor. c. 5.		3  Ebn Shohnah.  Vide Elmac. p. 16.

I shall give a brief account of the most remarkable of them, in order of time.
   In the reign of al Mohdi, the third Khalīf of the race of al Abbās, one 
Hakem Ebn Hāshem4, originally of Merū, in Khorasān, who had been an under-
secretary to Abu Moslem, the governor of that province, and afterwards turned 
soldier, passed thence into Mawarālnahr, where he gave himself out for a 
prophet.  He is generally named by the Arab writers al Mokanna, and sometimes 
al Borkaķ, that is, "the veiled," because he used to cover his face with a 
veil, or a gilded mask, to conceal his deformity, having lost an eye in the 
ward, and being otherwise of a despicable appearance; though his followers 
pretended he did it for the same reasons as Moses did, viz., lest the 
splendour of his countenance should dazzle the eyes of the beholders.  He made 
a great many proselytes at Nakhshab and Kash, deluding the people with several 
juggling performances, which they swallowed for miracles, and particularly by 
causing the appearance of a moon to rise out of a well, for many nights 
together; whence he was also called, in the Persian tongue, Sāzendeh mah, or 
the moonmaker.  This impious impostor, not content with being reputed a 
prophet, arrogated divine honours to himself, pretending that the deity 
resided in his person: and the doctrine whereon he built this was the same 
with that of the Gholāļtes above mentioned, who affirmed a transmigration or 
successive manifestation of the divinity through and in certain prophets and 
holy men, from Adam to these latter days (of which opinion was also Abu Moslem 
himself);1 but the particular doctrine of al Mokanna was, that the person in 
whom the deity had last resided was the aforesaid Abu Moslem, and that the 
same had, since his death, passed into himself.  The faction of al Mokanna, 
who had made himself master of several fortified places in the neighbourhood 
of the cities above mentioned, growing daily more and more powerful, the 
Khalīf was at length obliged to send an army to reduce him; at the approach 
whereof al Mokanna retired into one of his strongest fortresses, which he had 
well provided for a siege, and sent his emissaries abroad to pursuade people 
that he raised the dead to life, and knew future events.  But, being straitly 
besieged by the Khalīf's forces, when he found there was no possibility for 
him to escape, he gave poison, in wine, to his whole family, and all that were 
with him in the castle; and when they were dead he burnt their bodies, 
together with their clothes, and all the provisions and cattle; and then, to 
prevent his own body's being found, he threw himself into the flames, or, as 
others say, into a tub of aqua fortis, or some other preparation, which 
consumed every part of him, except only his hair: so that when the besiegers 
entered the place, they found no creature in it, save one of al Mokanna's 
concubines, who, suspecting his design, had hid herself, and discovered the 
whole matter.  This contrivance, however, failed not to produce the effect 
which the impostor designed among the remaining part of his followers; for he 
had promised them that his soul should transmigrate into the form of a grey-
headed man riding on a greyish beast, and that after so many years he would 

   4  Or Ebn Atā, according to Ebn Shohnan.		1  This explain a doubt 
of Mr. Bayle concerning a passage of Elmacinus, as translated by Erpenius, and 
corrected by Bespier.  Vide Bayle, Dic. Hist. Art. Abumuslimus, vers la fin, 
et Rem. B.

to them, and give them the earth for their possession: the expectation of 
which  promise kept the sect in being for several ages after under the name of 
Mobeyyidites, or, as the Persians call them, Sefid jāmehghiān, i.e., the 
clothed in white, because they wore their garments of that colour, in 
opposition, as is supposed, to the Khalīfs of the family of Abbās, whose 
banners and habits were black.  The historians place the death of al Mokanna 
in the 162nd or 163rd year of the Hejra.2
   In the year of the Hejra 201, Bābec, surnamed al Khorremi, and Khorremdīn, 
either because he was of a certain district near Ardebīl in Adherbijān, called 
Khorrem, or because he instituted a merry religion, which is the signification 
of the word in Persian, began to take on him the title of a prophet.  I do not 
find what doctrine he taught; but it is said he professed none of the 
religions then known in Asia.  He gained a great number of devotees in 
Adherbijān and the Persian Irāk, and grew powerful enough to wage war with the 
Khalīf al Mįmśn, whose troops he often beat, killing several of his generals, 
and one of them with his own hand; and by these victories he became so 
formidable that al Mótasem, the successor of al Mįmūn, was obliged to employ 
the forces of the whole empire against him.  The general sent to reduce Bābec 
was Afshīd, who having overthrown him in battle, took his castles one after 
another with invincible patience, notwithstanding the rebels gave him great 
annoyance, and at last shut up the impostor in his principal fortress; which 
being taken, Bābec found means to escape thence in disguise, with some of his 
family and principal followers; but taking refuge in the territories of the 
Greeks, was betrayed in the following manner.  Sahel, an Armenian officer, 
happening to know Bābec, enticed him, by offers of service and respect, into 
his power, and treated him as a mighty prince, till, when he sat down to eat, 
Sahel clapped himself down by him; at which Bābec being surprised, asked him 
how he dared to take that liberty unasked?  "It is true, great king," replied 
Sahel, "I have committed a fault; for who am I, that I should sit at your 
majesty's table?"  And immediately sending for a smith, he made use of this 
bitter sarcasm, "Stretch forth your legs, great king, that this man may put 
fetters on them."  After this Sahel sent him to Afshīd, though he had offered 
a large sum for his liberty, having first served him in his own kind, by 
causing his mother, sister, and wife to be ravished before his face; for so 
Bābec used to treat his prisoners.  Afshīd, having the arch-rebel in his 
power, conducted him to al Mótasem, by whose order he was put to an 
ignominious and cruel death.  This man had maintained his ground against the 
power of the Khalīfs for twenty years, and had cruelly put to death above two 
hundred and fifty thousand people; it being his custom never to spare man, 
woman, or child, either of the Mohammedans or their allies.3  The sectaries of 
Bābec which remained after his death seem to have been entirely dispersed, 
there being little or no mention made of them by historians.

   1  They were a sect in the days of Abulfaragius, who lived about five 
hundred years after this extraordinary event; and may, for aught I know, be so 
still.		2  Ex Abulfarag, Hist. Dyn. p. 226.  Lobb al Tawārikh, Ebn 
Shohnah, al Tabari, and Khondamir.  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. Art. Hakem 
Ben Haschem.			3  Ex Abulfarag, p. 252, &c.  Elmacin. p. 141, 
&c., and Khondamir.  Vide D'Herbel. Art Bābec.

   About the year 235, one Mahmūd Ebn Faraj pretended to be Moses 
resuscitated, and played his part so well that several people believed on him, 
and attended him when he was brought before the Khalīf al Motawakkel.  That 
prince, having been an ear-witness of his extravagant discourses, condemned 
him to receive ten buffets from every one of his followers, and then to be 
drubbed to death; which was accordingly executed; and his disciples were 
imprisoned till they came to their right minds.4
   The Karmatians, a sect which bore an inveterate malice against the 
Mohammedans, began first to raise disturbances in the year of the Hejra 278, 
and the latter end of the reign of al Mótamed.  Their origin is not well 
known; but the common tradition is, that  poor fellow, whom some call Karmata, 
came from Khūzistān to the villages near Cūfa, and there feigned great 
sanctity and strictness of life, and that GOD had enjoined him to pray fifty 
times a day, pretending also to invite people to the obedience of a certain 
Imām of the family of Mohammed: and this way of life he continued till he had 
made a very great party, out of whom he chose twelve, as his apostles, to 
govern the rest, and to propagate his doctrines.  But the governor of the 
province, finding men neglected their work, and their husbandry in particular, 
to say those fifty prayers a day, seized the fellow, and having put him into 
prison, swore that he should die; which being overheard by a girl belonging to 
the governor, she, pitying the man, at night took the key of the dungeon from 
under her master's head as he slept, and having let the prisoner out, returned 
the key to the place whence she had it.  The next morning the governor found 
the bird flown; and the accident being publicly known, raised great 
admiration, his adherents giving it out that GOD had taken him into heaven.  
Afterwards he appeared in another province, and declared to a great number of 
people he had got about him that it was not in the power of any to do him 
hurt; notwithstanding which, his courage failing him, he retired into Syria, 
and was not heard of any more.  His sect, however, continued and increased, 
pretending that their master had manifested himself to be a true prophet, and 
had left them a new law, wherein he had change the ceremonies and form of 
prayer used by the Moslems, and introduced a new kind of fast; and that he had 
also allowed them to drink wine, and dispensed with several things commanded 
in the Korān.  They also turned the precepts of that book into allegory; 
teaching that prayer was the symbol of obedience to their Imām, and fasting 
that of silence, or concealing their dogmas from strangers: they also believed 
fornication to be the sin of infidelity; and the guilt thereof to be incurred 
by those who revealed the mysteries of their religion, or paid not a blind 
obedience to their chief.  They are said to have produced a book, wherein was 
written (among other things), "In the name of the most merciful GOD.  Al Faraj 
Ebn Othmān of the town of Nasrāna, saith that Christ appeared unto him in a 
human form, and said, 'Thou art the invitation: thou art the demonstration: 
thou art the camel: thou art the beast: thou art John the son of Zacharias: 
thou art the Holy Ghost.'"1  From the year above mentioned the

		4  Ebn Shohnah.  Vide D'Herbel. p. 537.		1  Apud Abulfar. 
p. 275.

Karmatians, under several leaders, gave almost continual disturbance to the 
Khalīfs and their Mohammedan subjects for several years; committing great 
disorders and outrages in Chaldea, Arabia, Syria, and Mesopotamia, and at 
length establishing a considerable principality, the power whereof was in its 
meridian in the reign of Abu Dhāher, famous for his taking of Mecca, and the 
indignities by him offered to the temple there, but which declined soon after 
his time and came to nothing.2
   To the Karmatians the Ismaelians of Asia were very near of kin, if they 
were not a branch of them.  For these, who were also called al Molāhedah, or 
the Impious, and by the writers of the history of the holy wars, Assassins, 
agreed with the former in many respects; such as their inveterate malice 
against those of other religions, and especially the Mohammedan, their 
unlimited obedience to their prince, at whose command they were ready for 
assassinations, or any other bloody and dangerous enterprise, their pretended 
attachment to a certain Imām of the house of Ali, &c.  These Ismaelians in the 
year 483 possessed themselves of al Jebāl, in the Persian Irāk, under the 
conduct of Hasan Sabah; and that prince and his descendants enjoyed the same 
for a hundred and seventy-one years, till the whole race of them was destroyed 
by Holagu the Tartar.1
   The Bātenites, which name is also given to the Ismaelians by some authors, 
and likewise to the Karmatians,2 were a sect which professed the same 
abominable principles, and were dispersed over several parts of the east.3  
The word signifies Esoterics, or people of inward or hidden light or 
   Abu'l Teyyeb Ahmed, surnamed al Motanabbi, of the tribe of Jófa, is too 
famous on another account not to claim a place here.  He was one of the most 
excellent poets among the Arabians, there being none besides Abu Temām who can 
dispute the prize with him.  His poetical inspiration was so warm and exalted 
that he either mistook it or thought he could persuade others to believe it to 
be prophetical, and therefore gave himself out to be a prophet indeed; and 
thence acquired his surname, by which he is generally known.  His 
accomplishments were too great not to have some success; for several tribes of 
the Arabs of the deserts, particularly that of Kelāb, acknowledged him to be 
what he pretended.  But Lūlū, governor in those parts for Akhshīd king of 
Egypt and Syria, soon put a stop to the further progress of this new sect by 
imprisoning their prophet and obliging him to renounce his chimerical dignity; 
which having done, he regained his liberty, and applied himself solely to his 
poetry, by means whereof he got very considerable riches, being in high esteem 
at the courts of several princes.  Al Motanabbi lost his life, together with 
his son, on the bank of the Tigris, in defending the money which had been 
given him by Adado'ddawla, soltān of Persia, against some Arabian robbers who 
demanded it of him, with which money he was returning to Cūfa, his native 
city.  This accident happened in the year 354.4

   2  Ex Abulfar. ibid. Elmacino, p. 174, &c.  Ebn Shohnah, Khondamir.  Vide 
D'Herbel. Art. Carmath.		1  Vide Abulfar. p. 505, &c.  D'Herbel. p. 104, 
437, 505, 620, and 784.		2  Vide Elmacin. p. 174 and 286.  D'Herb. p. 
3  Vide Abulfar. p. 361, 374, 380, 483.		4  Pręf. in opera Motannabbis 
MS.  Vide D'Herbel. p. 638, &c.

   The last pretender to prophecy I shall now take notice of is one who 
appeared in the city of Amasia, in Natolia, in the year 638, and by his 
wonderful feats seduced a great multitude of people there.  He was by nation a 
Turkmān, and called himself Bāba, and had a disciple named Isaac, whom he sent 
about to invite those of his own nation to join him.  Isaac accordingly, 
coming to the territory of Someisat, published his commission, and prevailed 
on many to embrace his master's sect, especially among the Turkmāns; so that 
at last he had six thousand horse at his heels, besides foot.  With these Baba 
and his disciple made open war on all who would not cry out with them, "There 
is no GOD but GOD; Bāba is the apostle of GOD:" and they put great numbers of 
Mohammedans, as well as Christians, to the sword in those parts; till at 
length both Mohammedans and Christians, joining together, gave them battle, 
and having entirely routed them, put them all to the sword, except their two 
chiefs, who being taken alive, had their heads struck off by the executioner.1
   I could mention several other impostors of the same kind, which have arisen 
among the Mohammedans since their prophet's time, and very near enough to 
complete the number foretold by him: but I apprehend the reader is by this 
time tired as well as myself, and shall therefore here conclude this 
discourse, which may be thought already too long for an introduction.

	   1  Abulfar. p. 479.  Ebn Shohnah, D'Herb. Art. Bāba






     PRAISE be to GOD, the LORD of all creatures;b
     the most merciful,
     the king of the day of judgment.
     Thee do we worship, and of thee do we beg assistance.
     Direct us in the right way,
     in the way of those to whom thou hast been gracious; not of those against 
whom thou art incensed, nor of those who go astray.c

	a  In Arabic al Fātihat.  This chapter is a prayer, and held in great 
veneration by the Mohammedans, who give it several other honourable titles; as 
the chapter of prayer, of praise, of thanksgiving, of treasure, &c.  They 
esteem it as the quintessence of the whole Korān, and often repeat it in their 
devotions both public and private, as the Christians do the Lord's Prayer.1
	b  The original words are, Rabbi 'lālamīna, which literally signify Lord 
of the worlds; but ālamīna in this and other places of the Korān properly mean 
the three species of rational creatures, men, genii, and angels.  Father 
Marracci has endeavoured to prove from this passage that Mohammed believed a 
plurality of worlds, which he calls the error of the Manichees, &c.:2 but this 
imputation the learned Reland has shown to be entirely groundless.3
	c  This last sentence contains a petition, that GOD would lead the 
supplicants into the true religion, by which is meant the Mohammedan, in the 
Korān often called the right way; in this place more particularly defined to 
be, the way of those to whom GOD hath been gracious, that is, of the prophets 
and faithful who preceded Mohammed; under which appellations are also 
comprehended the Jews and Christians, such as they were in the times of their 
primitive purity, before they had deviated from their respective institutions; 
not the way of the modern Jews, whose signal calamities are marks of the just 
anger of GOD against them for their obstinacy and disobedience: nor of the 
Christians of this age, who have departed from the true doctrine of Jesus, and 
are bewildered in a labyrinth of error.4
	This is the common exposition of the passage; though al Zamakhshari, and 
some others, by a different application of the negatives, refer the whole to 
the true believers; and then the sense will run thus: The way of those to whom 
thou hast been gracious, against whom thou art not incensed, and who have not 
erred.  Which translation the original will very well bear.

	1  Vide Bobovium de Precib. Mohammed. p. 3, et seq.		2  In 
Prodromo ad Refut. Alcorani part iv. p. 76, et in notis ad Alc. c. I.
3  De Religion. Mohammed. p. 262		1  Jallalo'ddin.  Al Beidawi, &c.




     A. L. M.e  There is no doubt in this book; it is a direction to the 
     who believe in the mysteriesf of faith, who observe the appointed times 
of prayer, and distribute alms out of what we have bestowed on them,
     and who believe in that revelation, which hath been sent down unto thee 
and that which hath been sent down unto the prophets before thee,g and have 
firm assurance of the life to come:h
     these are directed by their LORD, and they shall prosper.
     As for the unbelievers, it will be equal to them whether thou admonish 
them, or do not admonish them; they will not believe.
     GOD hath sealed up their hearts and their hearing; a dimness covereth 
their sight, and they shall suffer a grievous punishment. 
     There are some who say, We believe in GOD, and the last day; but are not 
really believers:
     they seek to deceive GOD, and those who do believe, but they deceive 
themselves only, and are not sensible thereof.
     There is an infirmity in their hearts, and GOD hath increased that 
infirmity;i and they shall suffer a most painful punishment, because they have 
10	When one saith unto them, Act not corruptlyk in the earth; they reply, 
Verily we are men of integrity.l
     Are not they themselves corrupt doers? but they are not sensible thereof.
     And when one saith unto them, Believe ye as othersm believe; they answer, 
Shall we believe as fools believe?  Are not they themselves fools?  but they 
know it not.
     When they meet those who believe, they say, We do believe: but when they 
retire privately to their devils,n they say, We really hold with you, and only 
mock at those people:

	d  This title was occasioned by the story of the red heifer, mentioned 
p. 9.
	e  As to the meaning of these letters, see the Preliminary Discourse, 
Sect. III.
	f  The Arabic word is gheib, which properly signifies a thing that is 
absent, at a great distance, or invisible, such as the resurrection, paradise, 
and hell.  And this is agreeable to the language of scripture, which defines 
faith to be the evidence of things not seen.1
	g  The Mohammedans believe that GOD gave written revelations not only to 
Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed, but to several other prophets;2 though they 
acknowledge none of those which preceded the Korān to be now extant, except 
the Pentateuch of Moses, the Psalms of David, and the Gospel of Jesus; which 
yet they say were even before Mohammed's time altered and corrupted by the 
Jews and Christians; and therefore will not allow our present copies to be 
	h  The original word al-ākherhat properly signifies the latter part of 
anything, and by way of excellence the next life, the latter or future state 
after death; and is opposed to al-donya, this world; and al-oula, the former 
or present life.  The Hebrew word ahharith, from the same root, is used by 
Moses in this sense, and is translated latter end.3
	i  Mohammed here, and elsewhere frequently, imitates the truly inspired 
writers, in making GOD by operation on the minds of reprobates to prevent 
their conversion.  This fatality or predestination, as believed by the 
Mohammedans, hath been sufficiently treated of in the Preliminary Discourse.
	k  Literally corrupt not in the earth, by which some expositors 
understand the sowing of false doctrine, and corrupting people's principles.
	l  According to the explication in the preceding note, this word must be 
translated reformers, who promote true piety by their doctrine and example.
	m  The first companions and followers of Mohammed.4
	n  The prophet, making use of the liberty zealots of all religions have, 
by prescription, of giving ill language, bestows this name on the Jewish 
rabbins and Christian priests; though he seems chiefly to mean the former, 
against whom he had by much the greater spleen.

	1  Heb. xi. I.  See also Rom. xxiv. 25; 2 Cor. iv. 18 and v. 7.	
	2  Vide Reland. de Relig. Moham. p. 34 and Dissert. de Samaritanis, p. 
34, &c.		3  Numb. xxiv. 20; Deut. viii. 16.		4  Jallalo'ddin.

     GOD shall mock at them, and continue them in their impiety; they shall 
wander in confusion.
     There are the the men who have purchased error at the price of true 
direction: but their traffic hath not been gainful, neither have they been 
rightly directed.
     They are like unto one who kindleth a fire,o and when it hath enlightened 
all around him,p GOD taketh away their lightq and leaveth them in darkness, 
they shall not see;
     they are deaf, dumb, and blind, therefore will they not repent.
     Or like a stormy cloud from heaven, fraught with darkness, thunder, and 
lightning,r they put their fingers in their ears because of the noise of the 
thunder, for fear of death; GOD encompasseth the infidels:
     the lightning wanteth but little of taking away their sight; so often as 
it enlighteneth them, they walk therein, but when darkness cometh on them, 
they stand still; and if GOD so pleased, he would certainly deprive them of 
their hearing and their sight, for GOD is almighty.  O men of Mecca, serve 
your LORD who hath created you, and those who have been before you: 
peradventure ye will fear him;
20	who hath spread the earth as a bed for you, and the heaven as a 
covering, and hath caused water to descend from heaven, and thereby produced 
fruits for your sustenance.  Set not up therefore any equals unto GOD, against 
your own knowledge.
     If ye be in doubt concerning that revelation which we have sent down unto 
our servant, produce a chapter like unto it, and call upon your witnesses 
besides GOD,s if ye say truth.
     But if ye do it not, nor shall ever be able to do it; justly fear the 
fire whose fuel is men and stones, prepared for the unbelievers.
     But bear good tidings unto those who believe, and do good works, that 
they shall have gardens watered by rivers; so often as they eat of the fruit 
thereof for sustenance, they shall say, this is what we have formerly eaten 
of; and they shall be supplied with several sorts of fruit having a mutual 
resemblance to one another.t  There shall they enjoy wives subject to no 
impurity, and there shall they continue forever.

	o  In this passage, Mohammed compares those who believed not on him, to 
a man who wants to kindle a fire, but as soon as it burns up, and the flames 
give a light, shuts his eyes, lest he should see.  As if he had said, You, O 
Arabians, have long desired a prophet of your own nation, and now I am sent 
unto you, and have plainly proved my mission by the excellence of my doctrine 
and revelation, you resist conviction, and refuse to believe in me; therefore 
shall God leave you in your ignorance.
	p  The sense seems to be here imperfect, and may be completed by adding 
the words, He turns from it, shuts his eyes, or the like.
	q  That is of the unbelievers, to whom the word their being in the 
plural, seems to refer; though it is not unusual for Mohammed, in affectation 
of the prophetic style, suddenly to change the number against all rules of 
	r  Here he compares the unbelieving Arabs to people caught in a violent 
storm.  To perceive the beauty of this comparison, it must be observed, that 
the Mohammedan doctors say, this tempest is a type or image of the Korān 
itself: the thunder signifying the threats therein contained; the lightning, 
the promises; and the darkness, the mysteries.  The terror of the threats 
makes them stop their ears, unwilling to hear truths so disagreeable; when the 
promises are read to them, they attend with pleasure; but when anything 
mysterious or difficult of belief occurs, they stand stock still, and will not 
submit to be directed.
	s  i.e., Your false gods and idols.
	t  Some commentators1 approve of this sense, supposing the fruits of 
paradise, though of various tastes, are alike in colour and outward 
appearance: but others2 think the meaning to be, that the inhabitants of that 
place will find there fruits of the same or the like kinds as they used to eat 
while on earth.

			1  Jallalo'ddin.		2  Al Zamakhshari.

     Moreover, GOD will not be ashamed to propound in a parable a gnat, or 
even a more despicable thing:u for they who believe will know it to be the 
truth from their LORD; but the unbelievers will say, What meaneth GOD by this 
parable?  he will thereby mislead many, and will direct many thereby: but he 
will not mislead any thereby, except the transgressors,
     who make void the covenant of GOD after the establishing thereof, and cut 
in sunder that which GOD hath commanded to be joined, and act corruptly in the 
earth; they shall perish.
     How is it that ye believe not in GOD?  Since ye were dead, and he gave 
you life;x he will hereafter cause you to die, and will again restore you to 
life; then shall ye return unto him.
     It is he who hath created for you whatsoever is on earth, and then set 
his mind to the creation of heaven, and formed it into seven heavens; he 
knoweth all things.
     When thy LORD said unto the angels, I am going to place a substitute on 
earth;y they said, Wilt thou place there one who will do evil therein, and 
shed blood? but we celebrate thy praise, and sanctify thee.  GOD answered, 
Verily I know that which ye know not;
     and he taught Adam the names of all things, and then proposed them to the 
angels, and said, Declare unto me the names of these things if ye say truth.
30	They answered, Praise be unto thee; we have no knowledge but what thou 
teachest us, for thou art knowing and wise.
     GOD said, O Adam, tell them their names.  And when he had told them their 
names, GOD said, Did I not tell you that I know the secrets of heaven and 
earth, and know that which ye discover, and that which ye conceal?z
     And when we said unto the angels, Worshipa Adam, they all worshipped him, 
except Eblis, who refused, and was puffed up with pride, and became of the 
number of unbelievers.b

	u  This was revealed to take off an objection made to the Korān by the 
infidels, for condescending to speak of such insignificant insects as the 
spider, the pismire, the bee, &c.3
	x  i.e., Ye were dead while in the loins of your fathers, and he gave 
you life in your mothers wombs; and after death ye shall be again raised at 
the resurrection.4
	y  Concerning the creation of Adam, here intimated, the Mohammedans have 
several peculiar traditions.  They say the angels, Gabriel, Michael, and 
Israfil, were sent by God, one after another, to fetch for that purpose seven 
handfuls of earth from different depths, and of different colours (whence some 
account for the various complexion of mankind5); but the earth being 
apprehensive of the consequence, and desiring them to represent her fear to 
God that the creature he designed to form would rebel against him, and draw 
down his curse upon her, they returned without performing God's command; 
whereupon he sent Azraļl on the same errand, who executed his commission 
without remorse, for which reason God appointed that angel to separate the 
souls from the bodies, being therefore called the angel of death.  The earth 
he had taken was carried into Arabia, to a place between Mecca and Tayef, 
where, being first kneaded by the angels, it was afterwards fashioned by God 
himself into a human form, and left to dry6 for the space of forty days, or, 
as others say, as many years, the angels in the meantime often visiting it, 
and Eblis (then one of the angels who are nearest to God's presence, 
afterwards the devil) among the rest; but he, not contented with looking on 
it, kicked it with his foot till it rung and knowing God designed that 
creature to be his superior, took a secret resolution never to acknowledge him 
as such.  After this, God animated the figure of clay and endued it with an 
intelligent soul, and when he had placed him in paradise, formed Eve out of 
his left side.7
	z  This story Mohammed borrowed from the Jewish traditions, which say 
that the angels having spoken of man with some contempt when God consulted 
them about his creation, God made answer that the man was wiser than they; and 
to convince them of it, he brought all kinds of animals to them, and asked 
them their names; which they not being able to tell, he put the same question 
to the man, who named them one after another; and being asked his own name and 
God's name, he answered very justly, and gave God the name of JEHOVAH1.  The 
angels' adoring of Adam is also mentioned in the Talmud.2
	a  The original word signifies properly to prostrate one's self till the 
forehead touches the ground, which is the humblest posture of adoration, and 
strictly due to GOD only; but it is sometimes, as in this place, used to 
express that civil worship or homage, which may be paid to creatures.3
	b  This occasion of the devil's fall has some affinity with an opinion 
which has been pretty much entertained among Christians,4 viz., that the 
angels being informed of GOD'S intention to create man after his own image, 
and to dignify human nature by CHRIST'S assuming it, some of them, thinking 
their glory to be eclipsed thereby, envied man's happiness, and so revolted.

	3  Yahya.		4  Jallalo'ddin.		5  Al Termedi, from a 
tradition of Abu Musa al Ashari		6  Kor. c. 55.		7  
Khondamir.  Jallalo'ddin.  Comment. in Korān, &c.  Vide D'Herbelot, Biblioth. 
Orient. p. 55.		1  Vide Rivin. Serpent. seduct. p. 56.		2  R. 
Moses Haddarshan, in Bereshit rabbah.		3  Jallalo'ddin.		4  
Irenęus, Lact. Greg. Nyssen. &c.

     And we said, O Adam, dwell thou and thy wife in the garden,c and eat of 
the fruit thereof plentifully wherever ye will; but approach not this tree,d 
lest ye become of the number of the transgressors.
     But Satan caused them to forfeit paradise,e and turned them out of the 
state of happiness wherein they had been; whereupon we said, Get ye down,f the 
one of you an enemy unto the other; and there shall be a dwelling-place for 
you on earth, and a provision for a season.
     And Adam learned words of prayer from his LORD, and GOD turned unto him, 
for he is easy to be reconciled and merciful.
     We said, Get ye all down from hence; hereafter shall there come unto you 
a direction from me,g and whoever shall follow my direction, on them shall no 
fear come, neither shall they be grieved;
     but they who shall be unbelievers, and accuse our signsh of falsehood, 
they shall be the companions of hell fire, therein shall they remain forever.
     O children of Israeli, remember my favor wherewith I have favored you; 
and perform your covenant with me, and I will perform my covenant with you; 
and revere me: and believe in the revelation which I have sent down, 
confirming that which is with you, and be not the first who believe not 
therein, neither exchange my signs for a small price; and fear me.

	c  Mohammed, as appears by what presently follows, does not place this 
garden or paradise on earth, but in the seventh heaven.5
	d  Concerning this tree or the forbidden fruit, the Mohammedans, as well 
as the Christians, have various opinions.  Some say it was an ear of wheat; 
some will have it to have been a fig-tree, and others a vine.6  The story of 
the Fall is told, with some further circumstances, in the beginning of the 
seventh chapter.
	e  They have a tradition that the devil offering to get into paradise to 
tempt Adam, was not admitted by the guard; whereupon he begged of the animals, 
one after another, to carry him in, that he might speak to Adam and his wife; 
but they all refused him except the serpent, who took him between two of his 
teeth, and so introduced him.  They add that the serpent was then of a 
beautiful form, and not in the shape he now bears.7
	f  The Mohammedans say that when they were cast down from paradise, Adam 
fell on the isle of Ceylon or Serendib, and Eve near Joddah (the port of 
Mecca) in Arabia; and that after a separation of 200 years, Adam was, on his 
repentance, conducted by the angel Gabriel to a mountain near Mecca, where he 
found and knew his wife, the mountain being thence named Arafat; and that he 
afterwards retired with her to Ceylon, where they continued to propagate their 
	It may not be improper here to mention another tradition concerning the 
gigantic stature of our first parents.  Their prophet, they say, affirmed Adam 
to have been as tall as a high palm-tree;9 but this would be too much in 
proportion, if that were really the print of his foot, which is pretended to 
be such, on the top of a mountain in the isle of Ceylon, thence named Pico de 
Adam, and by the Arab writers Rahūn, being somewhat above two spans long10 
(though others say it is 70 cubits long, and that when Adam set one foot here, 
he had the other in the sea)11; and too little, if Eve were of so enormous a 
size, as is said, when her head lay on one hill near Mecca, her knees rested 
on two others in the plain, about two musket-shots asunder.12
	g  GOD here promises Adam that his will should be revealed to him and 
his posterity; which promise the Mohammedans believe was fulfilled at several 
times by the ministry of several prophets, from Adam himself, who was the 
first, to Mohammed, who was the last.  The number of books revealed unto Adam 
they say was ten.1
	h  This word has various significations in the Korān; sometimes, as in 
this passage, it signifies divine revelation, or scripture in general; 
sometimes the verses of the Korān in particular, and at other times visible 
miracles.  But the sense is easily distinguished by the context.
	i  The Jews are here called upon to receive the Korān, as verifying and 
confirming the Pentateuch, particularly with respect to the unity of God and 
the mission of Mohammed.2  And they are exhorted not to conceal the passages 
of their law which bear witness to those truths, nor to corrupt them by 
publishing false copies of the Pentateuch, for which the writers were but 
poorly paid.3

	5  Vide Marracc. in Alc. p. 24.		6  Vide ibid. p. 22.	
	7  Vide ibid.		8  D'Herbelot, Bib. Orient. p. 55.
9  Yahya.		10  Moncony's Voyage, part i. p. 372, &c.  See Knox's 
Account of Ceylon.		11  Anciennes Relations des Indes, &c. p. 3.
12  Moncony's, ubi sup.		1  Vide Hottinger Hist. Orient. p. 11.  Reland. 
de Relig. Mohammed, p. 21.		2  Yahya.
3  Jallalo'ddin.

     Clothe not the truth with vanity, neither conceal the truth against your 
own knowledge;
40	observe the stated times of prayer, and pay your legal alms, and bow 
down yourselves with those who bow down.
     Will ye command men to do justice, and forget your own souls?  yet ye 
read the book of the law: do ye not therefore understand?
     Ask help with perseverance and prayer; this indeed is grievous unless to 
the humble,
     who seriously think they shall meet their LORD and that to him they shall 
     O children of Israel, remember my favor wherewith I have favored you, and 
that I have preferred you above all nations;
     dread the day wherein one soul shall not make satisfaction for another 
soul, neither shall any intercession be accepted from them, nor shall any 
compensation be received, neither shall they be helped.
     Remember when we delivered you from the people of Pharaoh, who grievously 
oppressed you, they slew your male children, and let your females live: 
therein was a great trial from your LORD.
     And when we divided the sea for you and delivered you, and drowned 
Pharaoh's people while ye looked on.k
     And when we treated with Moses forty nights; then ye took the calfl for 
your God, and did evil;
     yet afterwards we forgave you, that peradventure ye might give thanks.
50	And when we gave Moses the book of the law, and the distinction between 
good and evil, that peradventure ye might be directed.
     And when Moses said unto his people, O my people, verily ye have injured 
your own souls, by your taking the calf for your God; therefore be turned unto 
your Creator, and slay those among you who have been guilty of that crime;m 
this will be better for you in the sight of your Creator: and thereupon he 
turned unto you, for he is easy to be reconciled, and merciful.
     And when ye said, O Moses, we will not believe thee, until we see GOD 
manifestly; therefore a punishment came upon you, while ye looked on;
     then we raised you to life after ye had been dead, that peradventure ye 
might give thanks.n

	k  See the story of Moses and Pharaoh more particularly related, chapter 
vii. and xx. &c.
	l  The person who cast this calf, the Mohammedans say, was (not Aaron 
but) al Sāmeri, one of the principal men among the children of Israel, some of 
whose descendants it is pretended still inhabit an island of that name in the 
Arabian Gulf.4  It was made of the rings5 and bracelets of gold, silver, and 
other materials, which the Israelites had borrowed of the Egyptians; for 
Aaron, who commanded in his brother's absence, having ordered al Sāmeri to 
collect those ornaments from the people, who carried on a wicked commerce with 
them, and to keep them together till the return of Moses; al Sāmeri, 
understanding the founder's art, put them altogether into a furnace to melt 
them down into one mass, which came out in the form of a calf.1  The 
Israelites, accustomed to the Egyptian idolatry, paying a religious worship to 
this image, al Sāmeri went farther, and took some dust from the footsteps of 
the horse of the angel Gabriel, who marched at the head of the people, and 
threw it into the mouth of the calf, which immediately began to low, and 
became animated;2 for such was the virtue of that dust.3  One writer says that 
all the Israelites adored this calf, except only 12,000.4
	m  In this particular, the narration agrees with that of Moses, who 
ordered the Levites to slay every man his brother:5 but the scripture says, 
there fell of the people that day about 3,000 (the Vulgate says 23,000) men;6 
whereas the commentators of the Korān make the number of the slain to amount 
to 70,000; and add, that GOD sent a dark cloud which hindered them from seeing 
one another, lest the sight should move those who executed the sentence to 
	n  The persons here meant are said to have been seventy men, who were 
made choice of by Moses and heard the voice of GOD talking with him.  But not 
being satisfied with that, they demanded to see GOD; whereupon they were all 
struck dead by lightning, and on Moses's intercession restored to life.8

	4  Geogr. Nubiens. p. 45.			5  Kor. c. 7.		1  See 
Exod. xxxii. 24.		2  Kor. c. 7.
3  Jallalo'ddin.  Vide D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient. p. 650.		4  Abulfeda.
		5  Exod. xxxii. 26, 27.		6  Ibid. 28.
7  Jallalo'ddin, &c.		8  Ismael Ebn Ali.

     And we caused clouds to overshadow you, and manna and quailso to descend 
upon you, saying, Eat of the good things which we have given you for food: and 
they injured not us, but injured their own souls.
     And when we said, Enter into this city,p and eat of the provisions 
thereof plentifully as ye will; and enter the gate worshipping, and say, 
Forgiveness!q we will pardon you your sins, and give increase unto the well-
     But the ungodly changed the expression into another,r different from what 
had been spoken unto them; and we sent down upon the ungodly indignation from 
heaven,s because they had transgressed.
     And when Moses asked drink for his people, we said, Strike the rockt with 
thy rod; and there gushed thereout twelve fountainsu according to the number 
of the tribes, and all men knew their respective drinking-place.  Eat and 
drink of the bounty of GOD, and commit not evil on the earth, acting unjustly.
     And when ye said, O Moses, we will by no means be satisfied with one kind 
of food; pray unto thy LORD therefore for us, that he would produce for us of 
that which the earth bringeth forth, herbs and cucumbers, and garlic, and 
lentils, and onions;x Moses answered, Will ye exchange that which is better, 
for that which is worse?  Get ye down into Egypt, for there shall ye find what 
ye desire: and they were smitten with vileness and misery, and drew on 
themselves indignation from GOD.  This they suffered, because they believed 
not in the signs of GOD, and killed the prophets unjustly; this, because they 
rebelled and transgressed.

	o  The eastern writers say these quails were of a peculiar kind, to be 
found nowhere but in Yaman, from whence they were brought by a south wind in 
great numbers to the Israelites' camp in the desert.9  The Arabs call these 
birds Salwā, which is plainly the same with the Hebrew Salwim, and say they 
have no bones, but are eaten whole.10
	p  Some commentators suppose it to be Jericho, others Jerusalem.
	q  The Arabic word is Hittaton, which some take to signify that 
profession of the unity of GOD so frequently used by the Mohammedans, La ilāha 
illa 'llaho, There is no god but GOD.
	r  According to Jallalo'ddin, instead of Hittaton, they cried Habbat fi 
shaļrat-i.e., a grain in an ear of barley; and in ridicule of the divine 
command to enter the city in an humble posture, they indecently crept in upon 
their breech.
	s  A pestilence which carried off near 70,000 of them.11
	t  The commentators say this was a stone which Moses brought from Mount 
Sinai, and the same that fled away with his garments which he laid upon it one 
day while he washed; they add that Moses ran after the stone naked, till he 
found himself, ere he was aware, in the midst of the people, who, on this 
accident, were convinced of the falsehood of a report which had been raised of 
their prophet, that he was bursten, or, as others write, an hermaphrodite.1
	They describe it to be a square piece of white marble, shaped like a 
man's head; wherein they differ not much from the accounts of European 
travellers, who say this rock stands among several lesser ones, about 100 
paces from Mount Horeb, and appears to have been loosened from the 
neighbouring mountains, having no coherence with the others; that it is a huge 
mass of red granite, almost round on one side, and flat on the other, twelve 
feet high, and as many thick, but broader than it is high, and about fifty 
feet in circumference.2
	u  Marracci thinks this circumstance looks like a Rabbinical fiction, or 
else that Mohammed confounds the water of the rock at Horeb with the twelve 
wells at Elim;3 for he says several who have been on the spot affirm there are 
but three orifices whence the water issued.4  But it is to be presumed that 
Mohammed had better means of information in this respect than to fall into 
such a mistake; for the rock stands within the borders of Arabia, and some of 
his countrymen must needs have seen it, if he himself did not, as it is most 
probable he did.  And in effect he seems to be in the right.  For one who went 
into those parts in the end of the fifteenth century tells us expressly that 
the water issued from twelve places of the rock, according to the number of 
the tribes of Israel; egressę sunt aquę largissimę in duodecim locis petrę, 
juxta numerum duodecim tribuum Israel.5  A late curious traveller6 observes 
that there are twenty-four holes in the stone, which may be easily counted-
that is to say, twelve on the flat side, and as many on the opposite round 
side, every one being a foot deep, and an inch wide; and he adds, that the 
holes on one side do not communicate with those on the other, which a less 
accurate spectator not perceiving (for they are placed horizontally, within 
two feet of the top of the rock), might conclude they pierced quite through 
the stone, and so reckon them to be but twelve.
	x  See Numb. xi. 5, &c.

	9  See Psalm lxxviii. 26.		10  Vide D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient. 
p. 477.		11  Jallalo'ddin.
1  Jallalo'ddin, Yahya.		2  Breydenbach, Itinerar. Chartā m. p. 1.  
Sicard, dans les Mémoires des Missions, vol. vii. p. 14.		3  Exod. xv. 
27; Numb. xxxiii. 9.		4  Marracc. Prodr. part iv. p. 80.		5  
Breydenbach, ubi sup.		6  Sicard, ubi sup.

     Surely those who believe, and those who Judaize, and Christians, and 
Sabians,y whoever believeth in GOD, and the last day, and doth that which is 
right, they shall have their reward with their LORD; there shall come no fear 
on them, neither shall they be grieved.
60	Call to mind also when we accepted your covenant, and lifted up the 
mountain of Sinai over you,z saying, Receive the law which we have given you, 
with a resolution to keep it, and remember that which is contained therein, 
that ye may beware.
     After this ye again turned back, so that if it had not been for GOD's 
indulgence and mercy towards you, ye had certainly been destroyed.  Moreover 
ye know what befell those of your nation who transgressed on the sabbath day;a 
We said unto them, Be ye changed into apes, driven away from the society of 
     And we made them an example unto those who were contemporary with them, 
and unto those who came after them, and a warning to the pious.

	y  From these words, which are repeated in the fifth chapter, several 
writers7 have wrongly concluded that the Mohammedans hold it to be the 
doctrine of their prophet that every man may be saved in his own religion, 
provided he be sincere and lead a good life.  It is true, some of their 
doctors do agree this to be the purport of the words;1 but then they say the 
latitude hereby granted was soon revoked, for that this passage is abrogated 
by several others in the Korān, which expressly declare that none can be saved 
who is not of the Mohammedan faith, and particularly by those words of the 
third chapter, Whoever followeth any other religion than Islām (i.e., the 
Mohammedan) it shall not be accepted of him, and at the last day he shall be 
of those who perish.2  However, others are of opinion that this passage is not 
abrogated, but interpret it differently, taking the meaning of it to be that 
no man, whether he be a Jew, a Christian, or a Sabian, shall be excluded from 
salvation, provided he quit his erroneous religion and become a Moslem, which 
they say is intended by the following words, Whoever believeth in GOD and the 
last day, and doth that which is right.  And this interpretation is approved 
by Mr. Reland, who thinks the words here import no more than those of the 
apostle, In every nation he that feareth GOD, and worketh righteousness, is 
accepted with him;3 from which it must not be inferred that the religion of 
nature, or any other, is sufficient to save, without faith in Christ.4
	z  The Mohammedan tradition is, that the Israelites refusing to receive 
the law of Moses, GOD tore up the mountain by the roots, and shook it over 
their heads, to terrify them into a compliance.5
	a  The story to which this passage refers, is as follows:  In the days 
of David some Israelites dwelt at Ailah, or Elath, on the Red Sea, where on 
the night of the sabbath the fish used to come in great numbers to the shore, 
and stay there all the sabbath, to tempt them; but the night following they 
returned into the sea again.  At length some of the inhabitants, neglecting 
GOD'S command, catched fish on the sabbath, and dressed and ate them; and 
afterward cut canals from the sea, for the fish to enter, with sluices, which 
they shut on the sabbath, to prevent their return to the sea.  The other part 
of the inhabitants, who strictly observed the sabbath, used both persuasion 
and force to stop this impiety, but to no purpose, the offenders growing only 
more and more obstinate; whereupon David cursed the sabbath-breakers, and God 
transformed them into apes.  It is said that one going to see a friend of his 
that was among them, found him in the shape of an ape, moving his eyes about 
wildly; and asking him whether he was not such a one, the ape made a sign with 
his head that it was he; whereupon the friend said to him, Did not I advise 
you to desist? at which the ape wept.  They add that these unhappy people 
remained three days in this condition, and were afterwards destroyed by a wind 
which swept them all into the sea.6

	7  Selden, de Jure Nat. et Gent. sec. Hebr. l. 6, c. 12.  Angel, a St. 
Joseph. Gazophylac. Persic. p. 365.  Nic. Cusanus in Cribratione Alcorani, l. 
3, c. 2, &c.		1  See Chardin's Voyages, vol. ii. p. 326, 331.	
	2  Abu'lkasem Hebatallah de abrogante et abrogato.		3  Acts x. 
35.		4  Vide Reland. de Rel. Moham. p. 128, &c.		5  
Jallalo'ddin.		6  Abulfeda.

     And when Moses said unto his people, Verily GOD commandeth you to 
sacrifice a cow;b they answered, Dost thou make a jest of us!  Moses said, GOD 
forbid that I should be one of the foolish.  They said, Pray for us unto thy 
LORD, that he would show us what cow it is.  Moses answered, He saith, She is 
neither an old cow, nor a young heifer, but of a middle age between both: do 
ye therefore that which ye are commanded.
     They said, Pray for us unto thy LORD, that he would show us what colour 
she is of.  Moses answered, He saith, She is a red cow,c intensely red, her 
colour rejoiceth the beholders.
     They said, Pray for us unto thy LORD, that he would further show us what 
cow it is, for several cows with us are like one another, and we, if GOD 
please, will be directed.
     Moses answered, He saith, She is a cow not broken to plough the earth, or 
water the field, a sound one, there is no blemish in her.  They said, Now hast 
thou brought the truth.  Then they sacrificed her; yet they wanted but little 
of leaving it undone.d
     And when ye slew a man, and contended among yourselves concerning him, 
GOD brought forth to light that which ye concealed.
     For we said, Strike the dead body with part of the sacrificed cow:e so 
GOD raiseth the dead to life, and showeth you his signs, that peradventure ye 
may understand.
     Then were your hearts hardened after this, even as stones, or exceeding 
them in hardness: for from some stones have rivers bursted forth, others have 
been rent in sunder, and water hath issued from them, and others have fallen 
down for fear of GOD.  But GOD is not regardless of that which ye do.
70	Do ye therefore desire that the Jews should believe you? yet a part of 
them heard the word of GOD, and then perverted it, after they had understood 
it, against their own conscience.
     And when they meet the true believers, they say, We believe: but when 
they are privately assembled together, they say, Will ye acquaint them with 
what GOD hath revealed unto you, that they may dispute with you concerning it 
in the presence of your LORD?  Do ye not therefore understand?
     Do not they know that GOD knoweth that which they conceal as well as that 
which they publish?

	b  The occasion of this sacrifice is thus related.  A certain man at his 
death left his son, then a child, a cow-calf, which wandered in the desert 
till he came to age; at which time his mother told him the heifer was his, and 
bid him fetch her, and sell her for three pieces of gold.  When the young man 
came to the market with his heifer, an angel in the shape of a man accosted 
him, and bid him six pieces of gold for her; but he would not take the money 
till he had asked his mother's consent; which when he had obtained, he 
returned to the market-place, and met the angel, who now offered him twice as 
much for the heifer, provided he would say nothing of it to his mother; but 
the young man refusing, went and acquainted her with the additional offer.  
The woman perceiving it was an angel, bid her son go back and ask him what 
must be done with the heifer; whereupon the angel told the young man that in a 
little time the children of Israel would buy that heifer of him at any price.  
And soon after it happened that an Israelite, named Hammiel, was killed by a 
relation of his, who, to prevent discovery, conveyed the body to a place 
considerably distant from that where the fact was committed.  The friends of 
the slain man accused some other persons of the murder before Moses; but they 
denying the fact, and there being no evidence to convict them, God commanded a 
cow, of such and such particular marks, to be killed; but there being no other 
which answered the description except the orphan's heifer, they were obliged 
to buy her for as much gold as her hide would hold; according to some, for her 
full weight in gold, and as others say, for ten times as much.  This heifer 
they sacrificed, and the dead body being, by divine direction, struck with a 
part of it, revived, and standing up, named the person who had killed him; 
after which it immediately fell down dead again.1  The whole story seems to be 
borrowed from the red heifer, which was ordered by the Jewish law to be burnt, 
and the ashes kept for purifying those who happened to touch a dead corpse;2 
and from the heifer directed to be slain for the expiation of an uncertain 
murder.  See Deut. xxi. 1-9.
	c  The epithet in the original is yellow; but this word we do not use in 
speaking of the colour or cattle.
	d  Because of the exorbitant price which they were obliged to pay for 
the heifer.
	e  i.e., Her tongue, or the end of her tail.3

			1  Abulfeda.		2  Numb. xix.		3  

     But there are illiterate men among them, who know not the book of the 
law, but only lying stories, although they think otherwise.  And woe unto 
them, who transcribe corruptly the book of the lawf with their hands, and then 
say, This is from GOD: that they may sell it for a small price.  Therefore woe 
unto them because of that which their hands have written; and woe unto them 
for that which they have gained.
     They say, The fire of hell shall not touch us but for a certain number of 
days.g  Answer, Have ye received any promise from GOD to that purpose? for GOD 
will not act contrary to his promise: or do ye speak concerning GOD that which 
ye know not?
     Verily whoso doth evil,h and is encompassed by his iniquity, they shall 
be the companions of hell fire, they shall remain therein forever:
     but they who believe and do good works, they shall be the companions of 
paradise, they shall continue therein forever.
     Remember also, when we accepted the covenant of the children of Israel, 
saying, Ye shall not worship any other except GOD, and ye shall show kindness 
to your parents and kindred, and to orphans, and to the poor, and speak that 
which is good unto men, and be constant at prayer, and give alms.  Afterwards 
ye turned back, except a few of you, and retired afar off.
     And when we accepted your covenant, saying, Ye shall not shed your 
brother's blood nor dispossess one another of your habitations; then ye 
confirmed it, and were witnesses thereto.
     Afterwards ye were they who slew one another,i and turned several of your 
brethren out of their houses, mutually assisting each other against them with 
injustice and enmity; but if they come captives unto you, ye redeem them: yet 
it is equally unlawful for you to dispossess them.  Do ye therefore believe in 
part of the book of the law, and reject other part thereof?  But whoso among 
you doth this, shall have no other reward than shame in this life, and on the 
day of resurrection they shall be sent to a most grievous punishment; for GOD 
is not regardless of that which ye do.
80	These are they who have purchased this present life, at the price of 
that which is to come; wherefore their punishment shall not be mitigated, 
neither shall they be helped.
     We formerly delivered the book of the law unto Moses, and caused apostles 
to succeed him, and gave evident miracles to Jesus the son of Mary, and 
strengthened him with the holy spirit.k  Do ye therefore, whenever an apostle 
cometh unto you with that which your souls desire not, proudly reject him, and 
accuse some of imposture, and slay others?

	f  Mohammed again accuses the Jews of corrupting their scripture.
	g  That is, says Jallalo'ddin, forty; being the number of days that 
their forefathers worshipped the golden calf; after which they gave out that 
their punishment should cease.  It is a received opinion among the Jews at 
present, that no person, be he ever so wicked, or of whatever sect, shall 
remain in hell above eleven months, or at most a year; except Dathan and 
Abiram, and atheists, who will be tormented there to all eternity.1
	h  By evil in this place the commentators generally understand 
polytheism or idolatry; which sin the Mohammedans believe, unless repented of 
in this life, is unpardonable and will be punished by eternal damnation; but 
all other sins they hold will at length be forgiven.  This therefore is that 
irremissible impiety, in their opinion, which in the New Testament is called 
the sin against the Holy Ghost.
	i  This passage was revealed on occasion of some quarrels which arose 
between the Jews of the tribes of Koreidha, and those of al Aws, al Nadhīr, 
and al Khazraj, and came to that height that they took arms and destroyed one 
another's habitations, and turned one another out of their houses; but when 
any were taken captive, they redeemed them.  When they were asked the reason 
of their acting in this manner, they answered, That they were commanded by 
their law to redeem the captives, but that they fought out of shame, lest 
their chiefs should be despised.2
	k  We must not imagine Mohammed here means the Holy Ghost in the 
Christian acceptation.  The commentators says this spirit was the angel 
Gabriel, who sanctified Jesus and constantly attended on him.1

	1  Vide Bartoloccii Biblioth. Rabbinic. tom. ii. p. 128, et tom. iii. p. 
421.		2  Jallalo'ddin.		1  Jallalo'ddin.

     The Jews say, Our hearts are uncircumcised: but GOD hath cursed them with 
their infidelity; therefore few shall believe.
     And when a book came unto them from GOD, confirming the scriptures which 
were with them, although they had before prayed for assistance against those 
who believed not,l yet when that came unto them which they knew to be from 
God, they would not believe therein: therefore the curse of GOD shall be on 
the infidels.
     For a vile price have they sold their souls, that they should not believe 
in that which GOD hath sent down;m out of envy, because GOD sendeth down his 
favors to such of his servants as he pleaseth: therefore they brought on 
themselves indignation on indignation; and the unbelievers shall suffer an 
ignominious punishment.
     When one saith unto them, Believe in that which GOD hath sent down; they 
answer, We believe in that which hath been sent down unto us:n and they reject 
what hath been revealed since, although it be the truth, confirming that which 
is with them.  Say, Why therefore have ye slain the prophets of GOD in times 
past, if ye be true believers?  
     Moses formerly came unto you with evident signs, but ye afterwards took 
the calf for your god and did wickedly.
     And when we accepted your covenant, and lifted the mountain of Sinai over 
you,o saying Receive the law which we have given you, with a resolution to 
perform it, and hear; they said, We have heard, and have rebelled: and they 
were made to drink down the calf into their heartsp for their unbelief.  Say, 
A grievous thing hath your faith commanded you, if ye be true believers?q
     Say, if the future mansion with GOD be prepared peculariarly for you, 
exclusive of the rest of mankind, wish for death, if ye say truth;
     but they will never wish for it, because of that which their hands have 
sent before them;r GOD knoweth the wicked-doers;
90	and thou shalt surely find them of all men the most covetous of life, 
even more than the idolaters: one of them would desire his life to be 
prolonged a thousand years, but none shall reprieve himself from punishment, 
that his life may be prolonged: GOD seeth that which they do.
     Say, Whoever is an enemy to Gabriels (for he hath caused the Koran to 
descend on thy heart, by the permission of GOD, confirming that which was 
before revealed, a direction, and good tidings to the faithful);

	l  The Jews in expectation of the coming of Mohammed (according to the 
tradition of his followers) used this prayer, O God, help us against the 
unbelievers by the prophet who is to be sent in the last times.2
	m  The Korān.
	n  The Pentateuch.
	o  See before p. 8.
	p  Moses took the calf which they had made, and burnt it in the fire, 
and ground it to powder, and strewed it upon the water (of the brook that 
descended from the mount), and made the children of Israel drink of it.3
	q  Mohammed here infers from their forefathers' disobedience in 
worshipping the calf, at the same time that they pretended to believe in the 
law of Moses, that the faith of the Jews in his time was as vain and 
hypocritical, since they rejected him, who was foretold therein, as an 
	r  That is, by reason of the wicked forgeries which they have been 
guilty of in respect to the scriptures.  An expression much like that of St. 
Paul, where he says, that some men's sins are open beforehand, going before to 
	s  The commentators say that the Jews asked what angel it was that 
brought the divine revelations to Mohammed; and being told that it was 
Gabriel, they replied that he was their enemy, and the messenger of wrath and 
punishment; but if it had been Michael, they would

	2  Idem.		3  Exod. xxxii. 20; Deut. ix. 21.		4  
Jallalo'ddin, Yahya, al Beidāwi.		5  1 Tim. v. 24.

     whosoever is an enemy to GOD, or his angels, or his apostles, or to 
Gabriel, or Michael, verily GOD is an enemy to the unbelievers.
     And now we have sent down unto thee evident signs,t and none will 
disbelieve them but the evil-doers.
     Whenever they make a covenant, will some of them reject it? yea, the 
greater part of them do not believe.
     And when there came unto them an apostle from GOD, confirming that 
scripture which was with them, some of those to whom the scriptures were given 
cast the book of GOD behind their backs, as if they knew it not:
     and they followed the device which the devils devised against the kingdom 
of Solomon;u and Solomon was not an unbeliever; but the devils believed not, 
they taught men sorcery, and that which was sent down to the two angels at 
Babel, Harūt and Marūt:v yet those two taught no man until they had said, 
Verily we are a temptation, therefore be not an unbeliever.  So men learned 
from those two a charm by which they might cause division between a man and 
his wife; but they hurt none thereby, unless by GOD'S permission, and they 
learned that which would hurt them, and not profit them; and yet they knew 
that he who bought that art should have no part in the life to come, and woful 
is the price for which they have sold their souls, if they knew it.
     But if they had believed, and feared GOD, verily the reward they would 
have had from GOD would have been better, if they had known it.

have believed on him, because that angel was their friend, and the messenger 
of peace and plenty.  And on this occasion, they say, this passage was 
	That Michael was really the protector or guardian angel of the Jews, we 
know from scripture;2 and it seems that Gabriel was, as the Persians call him, 
the angel of revelations, being frequently sent on messages of that kind;3 for 
which reason it is probable Mohammed pretended he was the angel from whom he 
received the Korān.
	t  i.e., the revelations of this book.
	u  The devils having, by GOD'S permission, tempted Solomon without 
success, they made use of a trick to blast his character.  For they wrote 
several books of magic, and hid them under that prince's throne, and after his 
death, told the chief men that if they wanted to know by what means Solomon 
had obtained his absolute power over men, genii, and the winds, they should 
dig under his throne; which having done, they found the aforesaid books, which 
contained impious superstitions.  The better sort refused to learn the evil 
arts therein delivered, but the common people did; and the priests published 
this scandalous story of Solomon, which obtained credit among the Jews, till 
GOD, say the Mohammedans, cleared that king by the mouth of their prophet, 
declaring that Solomon was no idolater.4
	v  Some say only that these were two magicians, or angels sent by GOD to 
teach men magic, and to tempt them.5  But others tell a longer fable; that the 
angels expressing their surprise at the wickedness of the sons of Adam, after 
prophets had been sent to them with divine commissions, GOD bid them choose 
two out of their own number to be sent down to be judges on earth.  Whereupon 
they pitched upon Harūt and Marūt, who executed their office with integrity 
for some time, till Zohara, or the planet Venus, descended and appeared before 
them in the shape of a beautiful woman, bringing a complaint against her 
husband (though others say she was a real woman).  As soon as they saw her, 
they fell in love with her, and endeavoured to prevail on her to satisfy their 
desires; but she flew up again to heaven, whither the two angels also 
returned, but were not admitted.  However, on the intercession of a certain 
pious man, they were allowed to choose whether they would be punished in this 
life, or in the other; whereupon they chose the former, and now suffer 
punishment accordingly in Babel, where they are to remain till the day of 
judgment.  They add that if a man has a fancy to learn magic, he may go to 
them, and hear their voice, but cannot see them.1
	This story Mohammed took directly from the Persian Magi, who mention two 
rebellious angels of the same names, now hung up by the feet, with their heads 
downwards, in the territory of Babel.2  And the Jews have something like this, 
of the angel Shamhozai, who, having debauched himself with women, repented, 
and by way of penance hung himself up between heaven and earth.3

	1  Jallalo'ddin; al Zamakh.  Yahya.		2  Dan. xii. I.		3  
Ibid.. c. viii. 16, and ix. 21; Luke i. 19, 26.  See Hyde de Rel. Vet. Persar. 
p. 263.		4  Yahya, Jallalo'ddin.		5  Jallalo'ddin.		1  
Yahya, &c.		2  Vide Hyde, ubi sup. c. 12.

     O true believers, say not to our apostle, Raļna; but say Ondhorna;x and 
hearken: the infidels shall suffer a grievous punishment.
     It is not the desire of the unbelievers, either among those unto whom the 
scriptures have been given, or among the idolaters, that any good should be 
sent down unto you from your LORD: but GOD will appropriate his mercy unto 
whom he pleaseth; for GOD is exceeding beneficent.
100	Whatever verse we shall abrogate, or cause thee to forget, we will bring 
a better than it, or one like unto it.  Dost thou not know that God is 
     Dost thou not know that unto GOD belongeth the kingdom of heaven and 
earth? neither have ye any protector or helper except GOD.
     Will ye require of your apostle according to that which was formerly 
required of Moses?y but he that hath exchanged faith for infidelity, hath 
already erred from the straight way.
     Many of those unto whom the scriptures have been given, desire to render 
you again unbelievers, after ye have believed; out of envy from their souls, 
even after the truth is become manifest unto them; but forgive them, and avoid 
them, till GOD shall send his command; for GOD is omnipotent.
     Be constant in prayer, and give alms; and what good ye have sent before 
for your souls, ye shall find it with GOD; surely GOD seeth that which ye do.
     They say, Verily none shall enter paradise, except they who are Jews or 
Christians:z this is their wish.  Say, Produce your proof of this, if ye speak 
     Nay, but he who resigneth himselfa to GOD, and doth that which is right,b 
he shall have his reward with his LORD: there shall come no fear on them, 
neither shall they be grieved.
     The Jews say, The Christians are grounded on nothing;c and the Christians 
say, The Jews are grounded on nothing; and the Christians say, The Jews are 
grounded on nothing; yet they both read the scriptures.  So likewise say they 
who know not the scripture, according to their saying.  But GOD shall judge 
between them on the day of the resurrection, concerning that about which they 
now disagree.
     Who is more unjust than he who prohibiteth the temples of GOD,d that his 
name should be remembered therein, and who hasteth to destroy them?  Those men 
cannot enter therein, but with fear: they shall have shame in this world, and 
in the next a grievous punishment.
     To GOD belongeth the east and the west; therefore whithersoever ye turn 
yourselves to pray, there is the face of GOD; for GOD is omnipresent and 

	x  Those two Arabic words have both the same signification, viz., Look 
on us; and are a kind of salutation.  Mohammed had a great aversion to the 
first, because the Jews frequently used it in derision, it being a word of 
reproach in their tongue.4  They alluded, it seems, to the Hebrew verb [Hebrew 
Text] ruį, which signifies to be bad or mischievous.
	y  Namely, to see GOD manifestly.5
	z  This passage was revealed on occasion of a dispute which Mohammed had 
with the Jews of Medina, and the Christians of Najrān, each of them asserting 
that those of their religion only should be saved.6
	a  Literally, resigneth his face, &c.
	b  That is, asserteth the unity of GOD.7
	c  The Jews and Christians are here accused of denying the truth of each 
other's religion, notwithstanding they read the scriptures.  Whereas the 
Pentateuch bears testimony to Jesus, and the Gospel bears testimony to Moses.1
	d  Or hindereth men from paying their adorations to GOD in those sacred 
places.  This passage, says Jallalo'ddin, was revealed on news being brought 
that the Romans had spoiled the temple of Jerusalem; or else when the 
idolatrous Arabs obstructed Mohammed's visiting the temple of Mecca, in the 
expedition of al Hodeibiya, which happened in the sixth year of the Hejra.2

	3  Bereshit rabbah, in Gen. vi. 2.		4  Jallalo'ddin.		5  See 
before, p. 7.		6  Jallalo'ddin.
7  Idem.		1  Idem.		2  Vide Abulfeda. Vit. Moham. p. 84, &c.

110	They say, GOD hath begotten children:e GOD forbid!  To him belongeth 
whatever is in heaven, and on earth; all is possessed by him,
     the Creator of heaven and earth; and when he decreeth a thing, he only 
saith unto it, Be, and it is.
     And they who know not the scriptures say, Unless GOD speak unto us, or 
thou show us a sign, we will not believe.  So said those before them, 
according to their saying: their hearts resemble each other.  We have already 
shown manifest signs unto people who firmly believe;
     we have sent thee in truth, a bearer of good tidings and a preacher; and 
thou shalt not be questioned concerning the companions of hell.
     But the Jews will not be pleased with thee, neither the Christians, until 
thou follow their religion; say, The direction of GOD is the true direction.  
And verily if thou follow their desires, after the knowledge which hath been 
given thee, thou shalt find no patron or protector against GOD.
     They to whom we have given the book of the Koran, and who read it with 
its true reading, they believe therein; and whoever believeth not therein, 
they shall perish.
     O children of Israel, remember my favor wherewith I have favored you, and 
that I have preferred you before all nations;
     and dread the day wherein one soul shall not make satisfaction for 
another soul, neither shall any compensation be accepted from them, nor shall 
any intercession avail, neither shall they be helped.
     Remember when the LORD tried Abraham by certain words,f which he 
fulfilled: GOD said, Verily I will constitute thee a model of religiong unto 
mankind; he answered, And also of my posterity; GOD said, My covenant doth not 
comprehend the ungodly.
     And when we appointed the holy househ of Mecca to be a place of resort 
for mankind, and a place of security; and said, Take the station of Abrahami 
for a place of prayer; and we covenanted with Abraham for a place of prayer; 
and we covenanted with Abraham and Ismael, that they should cleanse my house 
for those who should compass it, and those who should be devoutly assiduous 
there, and those who should bow down and worship.
120	And when Abraham said, LORD make this a territory of security, and 
bounteously bestow fruits on its inhabitants, such of them as believe in GOD 
and the last day; GOD answered, And whoever believeth not, I will bestow on 
him little; after wards I will drive him to the punishment of hell fire; an 
ill journey shall it be!
     And when Abraham and Ismael raised the foundations of the house, saying, 
LORD, accept it from us, for thou art he who heareth and knoweth:
     LORD, make us also resignedk unto thee, and of our posterity a people 
resigned unto thee, and show us our holy ceremonies, and be turned unto us, 
for thou art easy to be reconciled, and merciful:

	e  This is spoken not only of the Christians and of the Jews (for they 
are accused of holding Ozair, or Ezra, to be the Son of GOD), but also the 
pagan Arabs, who imagined the angels to be the daughters of GOD.
	f  GOD tried Abraham chiefly by commanding him to leave his native 
country, and to offer his son.  But the commentators suppose the trial here 
meant related only to some particular ceremonies, such as circumcision, 
pilgrimage to the Caaba, several rites of purification, and the like.3
	g  I have rather expressed the meaning, than truly translated the Arabic 
word Imām, which answers to the Latin Antistes.  This title the Mohammedans 
give to their priests, who begin the prayers in their mosques, and whom all 
the congregation follow.
	h  That is, the Caaba, which is usually called, by way of eminence, the 
House.  Of the sanctity of this building, and other particulars relating to 
it, see the Preliminary Discourse, Sect. IV.
	i  A place so called within the inner enclosure of the Caaba, where they 
pretend to show the print of his foot in a stone.4
	k  The Arabic word is Moslemūna, in the singular Moslem, which the 
Mohammedans take as a title peculiar to themselves.  The Europeans generally 
write and pronounce it Musulman.

			3  Jallalo'ddin.			4  See the Prelim. Disc., 
Sect. IV.

     LORD, send them likewise an apostle from among them, who may declare thy 
signs unto them, and teach them the book of the Koran and wisdom, and may 
purify them; for thou art mighty and wise.
     Who will be averse to the religion of Abraham, but he whose mind is 
infatuated?  Surely we have chosen him in this world, and in that which is to 
come he shall be one of the righteous.
     When his LORD said unto him, Resign thyself unto me; he answered, I have 
resigned myself unto the LORD of all creatures.
     And Abraham bequeathed this religion to his children, and Jacob did the 
same, saying, My children, verily GOD hath chosen this religion for you, 
therefore die not, unless ye also be resigned.
     Were ye present when Jacob was at the point of death? when he said to his 
sons, Whom will ye worship after me?  They answered, We will worship thy GOD, 
and the GOD of thy fathers Abraham, and Ismael, and Isaac, one GOD, and to him 
will we be resigned.
     That people are now passed away, they have what they have gained,l and ye 
shall have what ye gain; and ye shall not be questioned concerning that which 
they have done.
     They say, Become Jews or Christians that ye may be directed.  Say, Nay we 
follow the religion of Abraham the orthodox, who was no idolater.
130	Say, We believe in GOD, and that which hath been sent down unto us, and 
that which hath been sent down unto Abraham, and Ismael, and Isaac, and Jacob, 
and the tribes, and that which was delivered unto Moses, and Jesus, and that 
which was delivered unto the prophets from their LORD: We make no distinction 
between any of them, and to GOD are we resigned.
     Now if they believe according to what ye believe, they are surely 
directed, but if they turn back, they are in schism.  GOD shall support thee 
against them, for he is in the hearer, the wise.
     The baptism of GODm have we received, and who is better than GOD to 
baptize? him do we worship.
     Say, Will ye dispute with us concerning GOD,n who is our LORD, and your 
LORD? we have our works, and ye have your works, and unto him are we sincerely 
     Will ye say, truly Abraham, and Ismael, and Isaac, and Jacob, and the 
tribes were Jews or Christians?  Say, are ye wiser, or GOD?  And who is more 
unjust than he who hideth the testimony which he hath received from GOD?o  But 
GOD is not regardless of that which ye do.
     That people are passed away, they have what they have gained, and ye 
shall have what ye gain, nor shall ye be questioned concerning that which they 
have done.

	l  Or deserved.  The Mohammedan notion, as to the imputation of moral 
actions to man, which they call gain, or acquisition, is sufficiently 
explained in the Preliminary Discourse.
	m  By baptism is to be understood the religion which GOD instituted in 
the beginning; because the signs of it appear in the person who professes it, 
as the signs of water appear in the clothes of him that is baptized.1
	n  These words were revealed because the Jews insisted that they first 
received the scriptures, that their Keblah was more ancient, and that no 
prophets could arise among the Arabs; and therefore if Mohammed was a prophet, 
he must have been of their nation.2
	o  The Jews are again accused of corrupting and suppressing the 
prophecies in the Pentateuch relating to Mohammed.

				1  Jallalo'ddin.			2  Idem.

     The foolish men will say, What hath turned them from their Keblah, 
towards which they formerly prayed?p  Say unto GOD belongeth the east and the 
west: he directeth whom he pleaseth into the right way.
     Thus have we placed you, O Arabians, an intermediate nation,q that ye may 
be witness against the rest of mankind, and that the apostle may be a witness 
against you.
     We appointed the Keblah, towards which thou didst formerly pray, only 
that we might know him who followeth the apostle, from him who turneth back on 
the heels;r though this change seem a great matter, unless unto those whom GOD 
hath directed.  But GOD will not render your faith of none effect;s for GOD is 
gracious and merciful unto man.
     We have seen thee turn about thy face towards heaven with uncertainty, 
but we will cause thee to turn thyself towards a Keblah that will please thee.  
Turn, therefore, thy face towards the holy temple of Mecca; and wherever ye 
be, turn your faces towards that place.  They to whom the scripture hath been 
given, know this to be truth from their LORD.  GOD is not regardless of that 
which ye do.
140	Verily although thou shouldest show unto those to whom the scripture 
hath been given all kinds of signs, yet they will not follow thy Keblah, 
neither shalt thou follow their Keblah; nor will one part of them follow the 
Keblah of the other.  And if thou follow their desires, after the knowledge 
which hath been given thee, verily thou wilt become one of the ungodly.
     They to whom we have given the scripture know our apostle, even as they 
know their own children, but some of them hide the truth, against their own 
     Truth is from thy LORD, therefore thou shalt not doubt.
     Every sect hath a certain tract of heaven to which they turn themselves 
in prayer; but do ye strive to run after good things; wherever ye be, GOD will 
bring you all back at the resurrection, for GOD is almighty.
     And from what place soever thou comest forth, turn thy face towards the 
holy temple, for this is truth from thy LORD; neither is GOD regardless of 
that which ye do.
     From what place soever thou comest forth, turn thy face towards the holy 
temple; and wherever ye be, thitherward turn your faces, lest men have matter 
of dispute against you; but as for those among them who are unjust doers, fear 
them not, but fear me, that I may accomplish my grace upon you, and that ye 
may be directed.
     As we have sent unto you an apostle from among you,t to rehearse our 
signs unto you, and to purify you, and to teach you the book of the Koran and 
wisdom, and to teach you that which ye knew not:
     therefore remember me, and I will remember you, and give thanks unto me, 
and be not unbelievers.
     O true believers, beg assistance with patience and prayer, for GOD is 
with the patient.

	p  At first, Mohammed and his followers observed no particular rite in 
turning their faces towards any certain place, or quarter of the world, when 
they prayed; it being declared to be perfectly indifferent.3  Afterwards, when 
the prophet fled to Medina, he directed them to turn towards the temple of 
Jerusalem (probably to ingratiate himself with the Jews), which continued to 
be their Keblah for six or seven months; but either finding the Jews too 
intractable, or despairing otherwise to gain the pagan Arabs, who could not 
forget their respect to the temple of Mecca, he ordered that prayers for the 
future should be towards the last.  This change was made in the second year of 
the Hejra,4 and occasioned many to fall from him, taking offence at his 
	q  This seems to be the sense of the words; though the commentators6 
will have the meaning to be that the Arabians are here declared to be a most 
just and good nation.
	r  i.e., Returneth to Judaism.
	s  Or will not suffer it to go without its reward, while ye prayed 
towards Jerusalem.
	t  That is, of your own nation.

	3  See before, p. 13.		4  Vide Abulfeda, Vit. Moham. p. 54.	
	5  Jallalo'ddin.		6  Idem. Yahya, &c.

     And say not of those who are slain in fight for the religion of GOD,u 
that they are dead; yea, they are living:x but ye do not understand.
150	We will surely prove you by afflicting you in some measure with fear, 
and hunger, and decrease of wealth, and loss of lives, and scarcity of fruits: 
but bear good tidings unto the patient,
     who, when a misfortune befalleth them, say, We are GOD'S and unto him 
shall we surely return.y
     Upon them shall be blessings from their LORD and mercy, and they are the 
rightly directed.
     Moreover Safa and Merwah are two of the monuments of God: whoever 
therefore goeth on pilgrimage to the temple of Mecca or visiteth it, it shall 
be no crime in him, if he compass them both.z  And as for him who voluntarily 
performeth a good work; verily GOD is grateful and knowing.
     They who conceal any of the evident signs, or the direction which we have 
sent down, after what we have manifested unto men in the scripture, GOD shall 
curse them; and they who curse shall curse them.a
     But as for those who repent and amend, and make known what they 
concealed, I will be turned unto them, for I am easy to be reconciled and 
     Surely they who believe not, and die in their unbelief, upon them shall 
be the curse of GOD, and of the angels, and of all men;
     they shall remain under it forever, their punishment shall not be 
alleviated, neither shall they be regarded.b
     Your GOD is one GOD; there is no GOD but He, the most merciful.
     Now in the creation of heaven and earth, and the vicissitude of night and 
day, and in the ship which saileth in the sea, loaden with what is profitable 
for mankind, and in the rain water which GOD sendeth from heaven, quickening 
thereby the dead earth, and replenishing the same with all sorts of cattle, 
and in the change of winds, and the clouds that are compelled to do servicec 
between heaven and earth, are signs to people of understanding:

	u  The original words are literally, who are slain in the way of GOD; by 
which expression, frequently occurring in the Korān, is always meant war 
undertaken against unbelievers for the propagation of the Mohammedan faith.
	x  The souls of martyrs (for such they esteem those who die in battle 
against infidels), says Jallalo'ddin, are in the crops of green birds, which 
have liberty to fly wherever they please in paradise, and feed on the fruits 
	y  An expression frequently in the mouths of the Mohammedans, when under 
any great affliction, or in any imminent danger.
	z  Safā and Merwā are two mountains near Mecca, whereon were anciently 
two idols, to which the pagan Arabs used to pay a superstitious veneration.1  
Jallalo'ddin says this passage was revealed because the followers of Mohammed 
made a scruple of going round these mountains, as the idolaters did.  But the 
true reason of his allowing this relic of ancient superstition seems to be the 
difficulty he found in preventing it.  Abul Kāsem Hebato'llah thinks these 
last words are abrogated by those other, Who will reject the religion of 
Abraham, except he who hath infatuated his souls?2  So that he will have the 
meaning to be quite contrary to the letter, as if it had been, it shall be no 
crime in him if he do not compass them.  However, the expositors are all 
against him3, and the ceremony of running between these two hills is still 
observed at the pilgrimage.4
	a  That is, the angels, the believers, and all things in general.5  But 
Yahya interprets it of the curses which will be given to the wicked, when they 
cry out because of the punishment of the sepulchre,6 by all who hear them, 
that is, by all creatures except men and genii.
	b  Or, as Jallalo'ddin expounds it, GOD will not wait for their 
	c  The original word signifies properly that are pressed or compelled to 
do personal service without hire; which kind of service is often exacted by 
the eastern princes of their subjects, and is called by the Greek and Latin 
writers, Angaria.  The scripture often mentions this sort of compulsion by 

	1  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. I.		2  See before, p. 15.	
	3  Vide Marracci in Alc. p. 69, &c		4  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. 
IV.		5  Jallalo'ddin.		6  See Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV		7  
Matth. v. 41; xxvii. 32, &c.

160	yet some men take idols beside GOD, and love them as with the love due 
to GOD; but the true believers are more fervent in love towards GOD.  Oh that 
they who act unjustly did perceive,d when they behold their punishment, that 
all power belongeth unto GOD, and that he is severe in punishing!
     When those who have been followed shall separate themselves from their 
followers,e and shall see the punishment, and the cords of relation between 
them shall be cut in sunder;
     the followers shall say, If we could return to life, we would separate 
ourselves from them, as they have now separated themselves from us.  So GOD 
will show them their works; they shall sigh grievously, and shall not come 
forth from the fire of hell.
     O men, eat of that which is lawful and good on the earth; and tread not 
in the steps of the devil, for he is your open enemy.
     Verily he commandeth you evil and wickedness, and that ye should say that 
of GOD which ye know not.
     And when it is said unto them who believe not, Follow that which GOD hath 
sent down; they answer, Nay, but we will follow that which we found our 
fathers practise.  What?  though their fathers knew nothing, and were not 
rightly directed?
     The unbelievers are like unto one who crieth aloud to that which heareth 
not so much as his calling, or the sound of his voice.  They are deaf, dumb, 
and blind, therefore do they not understand.
     O true believers, eat of the good things which we have bestowed on you 
for food, and return thanks unto GOD, if ye serve him.
     Verily he hath forbidden you to eat that which dieth of itself, and blood 
and swine's flesh, and that on which any other name but GOD'S hath been 
invocated.f  But he who is forced by necessity, not lusting, nor returning to 
transgress, it shall be no crime in him if he eat of those things, for GOD is 
gracious and merciful.
     Moreover they who conceal any part of the scripture which GOD hath sent 
down unto them, and sell it for a small price, they shall swallow into their 
bellies nothing but fire; GOD shall not speak unto them on the day of 
resurrection, neither shall he purify them, and they shall suffer a grievous 
170	These are they who have sold direction for error, and pardon for 
punishment: but how great will their suffering be in the fire!
     This they shall endure, because GOD sent down the book of the Koran with 
truth, and they who disagree concerning that book are certainly in a wide 
     It is not righteousness that ye turn your faces in prayer towards the 
east and the west, but righteousness is of him who believeth in GOD and the 
last day, and the angels, and the scriptures, and the prophets; who giveth 
money for GOD'S sake unto his kindred, and unto orphans, and the needy, and 
the stranger, and those who ask, and for redemption of captives; who is 
constant at prayer, and giveth alms; and of those who perform their covenant, 
when they have covenanted, and who behave themselves patiently in adversity, 
and hardships, and in time of violence; these are they who are true, and these 
are they who fear GOD.

	d  Or it may be translated, Although the ungodly will perceive, &c.  But 
some copies instead of yara, in the third person, read tara, in the second; 
and then it must be rendered, Oh if thou didst see when the ungodly behold 
their punishment, &c.
	e  That is, when the broachers or heads of new sects shall at the last 
day forsake or wash their hands of their disciples, as if they were not 
accomplices in their superstitions.
	f  For this reason, whenever the Mohammedans kill any animal for food, 
they always say, Bismi llah, or In the name of GOD; which, if it be neglected, 
they think it not lawful to eat of it.

     O true believers, the law of retaliation is ordained you for the slain: 
the free shall die for the free, and the servant for the servant, and a woman 
for a woman:g but he whom his brother shall forgive may be prosecuted, and 
obliged to make satisfaction according to what is just, and a fine shall be 
set on himh with humanity.
     This is indulgence from your LORD, and mercy.  And he who shall 
transgress after this, by killing the murderer, shall suffer a grievous 
     And in this law or retaliation ye have life, O ye of understanding, that 
peradventure ye may fear.
     It is ordained you, when any of you is at the point of death, if he leave 
any goods, that he bequeath a legacy to his parents, and kindred, according to 
what shall be reasonable.i  This is a duty incumbent on those who fear GOD.  
But he who shall change the legacy, after he hath heard it bequeathed by the 
dying person, surely the sin thereof shall be on those who change it, for GOD 
is he who heareth and knoweth.
     Howbeit he who apprehendeth from the testator any mistake or injustice, 
and shall compose the matter between them, that shall be no crime in him, for 
GOD is gracious and merciful.
     O true believers, a fast is ordained you, as it was ordained unto those 
before you, that ye may fear GOD.
     A certain number of days shall ye fast: but he among you who shall be 
sick, or on a journey, shall fast an equal number of other days.  And those 
who cank keep it, and do not, must redeem their neglect by maintaining of a 
poor man.l  And he who voluntarily dealeth better with the poor man than he is 
obliged, this shall be better for him.  But if ye fast, it will be better for 
you, if ye knew it.
180	The month of Ramadan shall ye fast, in which the Koran was sent down 
from heaven,n a direction unto men, and declarations of direction, and the 
distinction between good and evil.  Therefore, let him among you who shall be 
present in this month, fast the same month; but he who shall be sick, or on a 
journey, shall fast the like number of other days.  GOD would make this an 
ease unto you, and would not make it a difficulty unto you; that ye may fulfil 
the number of days, and glorify GOD, for that he hath directed you, and that 
ye may give thanks.

	g  This is not to be strictly taken; for according to the Sonna, a man 
also is to be put to death for the murder of a woman.  Regard is also to be 
had to difference in religion, so that a Mohammedan, though a slave, is not to 
be put to death for an infidel, though a freeman.1  But the civil magistrates 
do not think themselves always obliged to conform to this last determination 
of the Sonna.
	h  This is the common practice in Mohammedan countries, particularly in 
Persia,2 where the relations of the deceased may take their choice, either to 
have the murderer put into their hands to be put to death, or else to accept 
of a pecuniary satisfaction.
	i  That is, the legacy was not to exceed a third part of the testator's 
substance, nor to be given where there was no necessity.  But this injunction 
is abrogated by the law concerning inheritances.
	k  The expositors differ much about the meaning of this passage, 
thinking it very improbable that people should be left entirely at liberty 
either to fast or not, on compounding for it in this manner.  Jallalo'ddin, 
therefore, supposes the negative particle not to be understood, and that this 
is allowed only to those who are not able to fast, by reason of age or 
dangerous sickness; whether they would fast or maintain a poor man, which 
liberty was soon after taken away, and this passage abrogated by the 
following, Therefore let him who shall be present in this month, fast the same 
month.  Yet this abrogation, he says, does not extend to women with child or 
that give suck, lest the infant suffer.
	Al Zamakhshari, having first given an explanation of Ebn Abbās, who, by 
a different interpretation of the Arabic word Yotikūnaho, which signifies can 
or are able to fast, renders it, Those who find great difficulty therein, &c., 
adds an exposition of his own, by supposing something to be understood, 
according to which the sense will be, Those who can fast and yet have a legal 
excuse to break it, must redeem it, &c.
	l  According to the usual quantity which a man eats in a day and the 
custom of the country.3
	m  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.
	n  i.e., At home, and not in a strange country, where the fact cannot be 
performed, or on a journey.

	1  Jallalo'ddin.		2  Vide Chardin  Voyage de Perse, t. ii. p. 299, 
&c.		3  Jallalo'ddin.

     When my servants ask thee concerning me, Verily I am near; I will hear 
the prayer of him that prayeth, when he prayeth unto me: but let them hearken 
unto me, and believe in me, that they may be rightly directed.
     It is lawful for you, on the night of the fast, to go in unto your 
wives;o they are a garmentp unto you, and ye are a garment unto them.  GOD 
knoweth that ye defraud yourselves therein, wherefore he turneth unto you, and 
forgiveth you.  Now, therefore, go in unto them; and earnestly desire that 
which GOD ordaineth you, and eat and drink, until ye can plainly distinguish a 
white thread from a black thread by the daybreak: then keep the fast until 
night, and go not in unto them, but be constantly present in the places of 
worship.  These are the prescribed bounds of GOD, therefore draw not near them 
to transgress them.  Thus GOD declareth his signs unto men, that ye may fear 
     Consume not your wealth among yourselves in vain; nor present it unto 
judges, that ye may devour part of men's substance unjustly, against your own 
     They will ask thee concerning the phases of the moon:  Answer, They are 
times appointed unto men, and to show the season of the pilgrimage to Mecca.  
It is not righteousness that ye enter your houses by the back parts thereof,q 
but righteousness is of him who feareth GOD.  Therefore enter your houses by 
their doors; and fear GOD, that ye may be happy.
     And fight for the religion of GOD against those who fight against you; 
but transgress not by attacking them first, for GOD loveth not the 
     And kill them wherever ye find them, and turn them out of that whereof 
they have dispossessed you; for temptation to idolatry is more grievous than 
slaughter; yet fight not against them in the holy temple, until they attack 
you therein; but if they attack you, slay them there.  This shall be the 
reward of infidels.
     But if they desist, GOD is gracious and merciful.
     Fight therefore against them, until there be no temptation to idolatry, 
and the religion be GOD'S; but if they desist, then let there be no hostility, 
except against the ungodly.
     A sacred month for a sacred month,r and the holy limits of Mecca, if they 
attack you therein, do ye also attack them therein in retaliation; and whoever 
transgresseth against you by so doing, do ye transgress against him in like 
manner as he hath transgressed against you, and fear GOD, and know that GOD is 
with those who fear him.
190	Contribute out of your substance toward the defence of the religion of 
GOD, and throw not yourselves with your own hands into perdition;s and do 
good, for GOD loveth those who do good.

	o  In the beginning of Mohammedism, during the fast, they neither lay 
with their wives, nor ate nor drank after supper.  But both are permitted by 
this passage.1
	p  A metaphorical expression, to signify the mutual comfort a man and 
his wife find in each other.
	q  Some of the Arabs had a superstitious custom after they had been at 
Mecca (in pilgrimage, as it seems), on their return home, not to enter their 
house by the old door, but to make a hole through the back part for a passage, 
which practice is here reprehended.
	r  As to these sacred months, wherein it was unlawful for the ancient 
Arabs to attack one another, see the Prelim. Disc. Sect. VII.
	s  i.e., Be not accessory to your own destruction, by neglecting your 
contributions towards the wars against infidels, and thereby suffering them to 
gather strength.

					1  Jallalo'ddin.

     Perform the pilgrimage of Mecca, and the visitation of GOD; and, if ye be 
besieged, send that offering which shall be the easiest; and shave not your 
heads,t until your offering reacheth the place of sacrifice.  But, whoever 
among you is sick, or is troubled with any distemper of the head, must redeem 
the shaving his head, by fasting, or alms, or some offering.u  When ye are 
secure from enemies, he who tarrieth in the visitation of the temple of Meccax 
until the pilgrimage, shall bring that offering which shall be the easiest.  
But he who findeth not anything to offer, shall fast three days in the 
pilgrimage, and seven when ye are returned: they shall be ten days complete.  
This is incumbent on him whose family shall not be present at the holy temple.  
And fear GOD, and know that GOD is severe in punishing.
     The pilgrimage must be performed in the known months:y whosoever 
therefore purposeth to go on pilgrimage therein, let him not know a woman, nor 
transgress, nor quarrel in the pilgrimage.  The good which ye do, GOD knoweth 
it.  Make provision for your journey; but the best provision is piety and fear 
me, O ye of understanding.
     It shall be no crime in you, if ye seek an increase from your LORD, by 
trading during the pilgrimage.  And when ye go in processionz from Arafat,a 
remember GOD near the holy monument;b and remember him for that he hath 
directed you, although ye were before this of the number of those who go 
     Therefore go in procession from whence the people go in procession, and 
ask pardon of GOD, for GOD is gracious and merciful.
     And when ye have finished your holy ceremonies, remember GOD, according 
as ye remember your fathers, or with a more reverent commemoration.  There are 
some men who say, O LORD, give us our portion in this world; but such shall 
have no portion in the next life:
     and there are others who say, O LORD, give us good in this world and also 
good in the next world, and deliver us from the torment of hell fire.
     They shall have a portion of that which they have gained: GOD is swift in 
taking an account.c
     Remember GOD the appointed number of days:d but if any haste to depart 
from the valley of Mina in two days, it shall be no crime in him.  And if any 
tarry longer, it shall be no crime in him, in him who feareth GOD.  Therefore 
fear GOD, and know that unto him ye shall be gathered.

	t  For this was a sign they had completed their vow, and performed all 
the ceremonies of the pilgrimage.1
	u  That is, either by fasting three days, or feeding six poor people, or 
sacrificing a sheep.
	x  This passage is somewhat obscure.  Yahya interprets it of him who 
marries a wife during the visitation, and performs the pilgrimage the year 
following.  But Jallalo'ddin expounds it of him who stays within the sacred 
enclosures, in order to complete the ceremonies which (as it should seem) he 
had not been able to do within the prescribed time.
	y  i.e., Shawāl, Dhu'lkaada, and Dhu'lhajja.  See the Preliminary 
Discourse, Sect. IV.
	z  The original word signifies to rush forward impetuously; as the 
pilgrims do when they proceed from Arafat to Mozdalifa.
	a  A mountain near Mecca, so called because Adam there met and knew his 
wife, after a long separation.2  Yet others say that Gabriel, after he had 
instructed Abraham in all the sacred ceremonies, coming to Arafat, there asked 
him if he knew the ceremonies which had been shown him; to which Abraham 
answering in the affirmative, the mountain had thence its name.3
	b  In Arabic, al Masher al harām.  It is a mountain in the farther part 
of Mozdalifa, where it is said Mohammed stood praying and praising God, till 
his face became extremely shining.4  Bobovious calls it Farkh5, but the true 
name seems to be Kazah; the variation being occasioned only by the different 
pointing of the Arabic letters.
	c  For he will judge all creatures, says Jallalo'ddin, in the space of 
half a day.
	d  i.e., Three days after slaying the sacrifices.

	1  Jallalo'ddin.		2  See before, p. 5, note f.		3  Al Hasan.
		4  Jallalo'ddin.
5  Bobov. de Peregr. Meccana, p. 15.

     There is a man who causeth thee to marvele by his speech concerning this 
present life, and calleth God to witness that which is in his heart, yet he is 
most intent in opposing thee;
200	and when he turneth away from thee, he hasteth to act corruptly in the 
earth, and to destroy that which is sown, and springeth up:f but GOD loveth 
not corrupt doing.
     And if one say unto him, Fear GOD; pride seizeth him, together with 
wickedness; but hell shall be his reward, and an unhappy couch shall it be.
     There is also a man who selleth his soul for the sake of those things 
which are pleasing unto GOD;g and GOD is gracious unto his servants.
     O true believers, enter into the true religion wholly, and follow not the 
steps of Satan, for he is your open enemy.
     If ye have slipped after the declarations of our will have come unto you, 
know that GOD is mighty and wise.
     Do the infidels expect less than that GOD should come down to them 
overshadowed with clouds, and the angels also?  but the thing is decreed, and 
to GOD shall all things return.
     Ask the children of Israel how many evident signs we have showed them; 
and whoever shall change the grace of GOD after it shall have come unto him, 
verily GOD will be severe in punishing him.
     The present life was ordained for those who believe not, and they laugh 
the faithful to scorn; but they who fear GOD shall be above them, on the day 
of the resurrection: for GOD is bountiful unto whom he pleaseth without 
     Mankind was of one faith, and GOD sent prophets bearing good tidings, and 
denouncing threats and sent down with them the scripture in truth, that it 
might judge between men of that concerning which they disagreed: and none 
disagreed concerning it, except those to whom the same scriptures were 
delivered, after the declarations of GOD'S will had come unto them, out of 
envy among themselves.  And GOD directed those who believed, to that truth 
concerning which they disagreed, by his will: for GOD directeth whom he 
pleaseth into the right way.
     Did ye think ye should enter paradise, when as yet no such thing had 
happened unto you, as hath happened unto those who have been before you?  They 
suffered calamity, and tribulation, and were afflicted; so that the apostle, 
and they who believed with him, said: When will the help of GOD come?  Is not 
the help of GOD nigh?
210	They will ask thee what they shall bestow in alms: Answer, The good 
which ye bestow, let it be given to parents, and kindred, and orphans, and the 
poor and the stranger.  Whatsoever good ye do, GOD knoweth it.
     War is enjoined you against the Infidels; but this is hateful unto you:
     yet perchance ye hate a thing which is better for you, and perchance ye 
love a thing which is worse for you: but GOD knoweth and ye know not.

	e  This person was al Akhnas Ebn Shoraik, a fair-spoken dissembler, who 
swore that he believed in Mohammed, and pretended to be one of his friends, 
and to contemn this world.  But GOD here reveals to the prophet his hypocrisy 
and wickedness.1
	f  Setting fire to his neighbour's corn, and killing his asses by 
	g  The person here meant was one Soheib, who being persecuted by the 
idolaters of Mecca, forsook all he had, and fled to Medina.3

			1  Jallalo'ddin.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.

     They will ask thee concerning the sacred month, whether they may war 
therein: Answer, To war therein is grievous; but to obstruct the way of GOD, 
and infidelity towards him, and to keep men from the holy temple, and to drive 
out his people from thence, is more grievous in the sight of GOD, and the 
temptation to idolatry is more grievous than to kill in the sacred months.  
They will not cease to war against you, until they turn you from your 
religion, if they be able: but whoever among you shall turn back from his 
religion, and die an infidel, their works shall be vain in this world, and the 
next; they shall be the companions of hell fire, they shall remain therein 
     But they who believe, and who fly for the sake of religion, and fight in 
GOD's cause, they shall hope for the mercy of GOD; for GOD is gracious and 
     They will ask thee concerning wineh and lots:i  Answer, In both there is 
great sin, and also some things of use unto men;k but their sinfulness is 
greater than their use.  They will ask thee also what they shall bestow in 
     Answer, What ye have to spare.  Thus GOD showeth his signs unto you, that 
peradventure ye might seriously think
     of this present world, and of the next.  They will also ask thee 
concerning orphans: Answer, To deal righteously with them is best;
     and if ye intermeddle with the management of what belongs to them, do 
them no wrong; they are your brethren: GOD knoweth the corrupt dealer from the 
righteous; and if GOD please, he will surely distress you,l for GOD is mighty 
and wise.
     Marry not women who are idolaters, until they believe: verily a maid-
servant who believeth, is better than an idolatress, although she please you 
more.  And give not women who believe in marriage to the idolaters, until they 
believe: for verily a servant who is a true believer, is better than an 
idolater, though he please you more.
220	They invite unto hell fire, but GOD inviteth unto paradise and pardon 
through his will, and declareth his signs unto men, that they may remember.
     They will ask thee also concerning the courses of women: Answer, They are 
a pollution: therefore separate yourselves from women in their courses, and go 
not near them, until they be cleansed.  But when they are cleansed, go in unto 
them as GOD hath commanded you,m for GOD loveth those who repent, and loveth 
those who are clean.
     Your wives are your tillage, go in therefore unto your tillage in what 
manner soever ye will:n and do first some act that may be profitable unto your 
souls;o and fear GOD, and know that ye must meet him; and bear good tidings 
unto the faithful.

	h  Under the name of wine all sorts of strong and inebriating liquors 
are comprehended.1
	i  The original word, al Meiser, properly signifies a particular game 
performed with arrows, and much in use with the pagan Arabs.  But by lots we 
are here to understand all games whatsoever, which are subject to chance or 
hazard, as dice, cards, &c.2
	k  From these words some suppose that only drinking to excess and too 
frequent gaming are prohibited.3  And the moderate use of wine they also think 
is allowed by these words of the 16th chapter, And of the fruits of palm-trees 
and grapes ye obtain inebriating drink, and also good nourishment.  But the 
more received opinion is, that both drinking wine or other strong liquors in 
any quantity, and playing at any game of chance, are absolutely forbidden.4
	l  viz., By his curse, which shall certainly bring to nothing what ye 
shall wrong the orphans of.
	m  But not while they have their courses, nor by using preposterous 
	n  It has been imagined that these words allow that preposterous lust, 
which the commentators say is forbidden by the preceding; but I question 
whether this can be proved.2
	o  i.e., Perform some act of devotion or charity.

	1  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. V.		2  See ibid.		3  
Vide Jallalo'ddin et al Zamakhshari.		4  See the Prelim. Disc. ubi 
sup.		1  Ebn Abbas, Jallalo'ddin.		2  Jallalo'ddin, Yahya, al 
Zamakhshari    Vide Lucret. de Rer. Nat. l. 4, v. 1258, &c.

     Make not GOD the object of your oaths,p that ye will deal justly, and be 
devout, and make peace among men;q for God is he who heareth and knoweth.
     GOD will not punish you for an inconsiderate wordr in your oaths; but he 
will punish you for that which your hearts have assented unto: GOD is merciful 
and gracious.
     They who vow to abstain from their wives, are allowed to wait four 
months:s but if they go back from their vow, verily GOD is gracious and 
     and if they resolve on a divorce, GOD is he who heareth and knoweth.
     The women who are divorced shall wait concerning themselves until they 
have their courses thrice,u and it shall not be lawful for them to conceal 
that which GOD hath created in their wombs,x if they believe in GOD and the 
last day; and their husbands will act more justly to bring them back at this 
time, if they desire a reconciliation.  The women ought also to behave towards 
their husbands in like manner as their husbands should behave towards them, 
according to what is just: but the men ought to have a superiority over them.  
GOD is mighty and wise.
     Ye may divorce your wives twice; and then either retain them with 
humanity, or dismiss them with kindness.  But it is not lawful for you to take 
away anything of what ye have given them, unless both fear that they cannot 
observe the ordinances of GOD.y  And if ye fear that they cannot observe the 
ordinance of GOD, it shall be no crime in either of them on account of that 
for which the wife shall redeem herself.z  These are the ordinances of GOD; 
therefore transgress them not; for whoever transgresseth the ordinances of 
GOD, they are unjust doers.
     But if the husband divorce her a third time, she shall not be lawful for 
him again, until she marry another husband.  But if he also divorce her, it 
shall be no crime in them if they return to each other, if they think they can 
observe the ordinances of GOD, and these are the ordinances of GOD, he 
declareth them to people of understanding.

	p  So as to swear frequently by him.  The word translated object, 
properly signifies a butt to shoot at with arrows.3
	q  Some commentators4 expound this negatively, That ye will not deal 
justly, nor be devout, &c.  For such wicked oaths, they say, were customary 
among the idolatrous inhabitants of Mecca; which gave occasion to the 
following saying of Mohammed: When your swear to do a thing, and afterwards 
find it better to do otherwise, do that which is better, and make void your 
	r  When a man swears inadvertently, and without design.
	s  That is, they may take so much time to consider; and shall not, by a 
rash oath, be obliged actually to divorce them.
	t  i.e., If they be reconciled to their wives within four months, or 
after, they may retain them, and GOD will dispense with their oath.
	u  This is to be understood of those only with whom the marriage has 
been consummated; for as to the others there is no time limited.  Those who 
are not quite past childbearing (which a woman is reckoned to be after her 
courses cease, and she is fifty-five lunar years, or about fifty-three solar 
years old), and those who are too young to have children, are allowed three 
months only; but they who are with child must wait till they be delivered.5
	x  That is, they shall tell the real truth, whether they have their 
courses, or be with child, or not; and shall not, by deceiving their husband, 
obtain a separation from him before the term be accomplished: lest the first 
husband's child should, by that means, go to the second; or the wife, in case 
of the first husband's death, should set up her child as his heir, or demand 
her maintenance during the time she went with such child, and the expenses of 
her lying-in, under pretence that she waited not her full prescribed time.6
	y  For if there be a settled aversion on either side, their continuing 
together may have very ill, and perhaps fatal consequences.
	z  i.e., If she prevail on her husband to dismiss her, by releasing part 
of her dowry.

	3  Jallalo'ddin.		4  Idem.  Yahya.		5  Jallalo'ddin.	
	6  Yahya.

230	But when ye divorce women, and they have fulfilled their pre-scribed 
time, either retain them with humanity, or dismiss them with kindness; and 
retain them not by violence, so that ye transgress;a for he who doth this 
surely injureth his own soul.  And make not the signs of GOD a jest: but 
remember GOD'S favor towards you, and that he hath sent down unto you the book 
of the Koran, and wisdom admonishing you thereby; and fear GOD, and know that 
GOD is omniscient.
     But when ye have divorced your wives, and they have fulfilled their 
prescribed time, hinder them not from marrying their husbands, when they have 
agreed among themselves according to what is honourable.  This is given in 
admonition unto him among you who believeth in GOD, and the last day.  This is 
most righteous for you, and most pure.  GOD knoweth, but ye know not.
     Mothers after they are divorced shall give suck unto their children two 
full years, to him who desireth the time of giving suck to be completed; and 
the father shall be obliged to maintain them and clothe them in the mean time, 
according to that which shall be reasonable.  No person shall be obliged 
beyond his ability.  A mother shall not be compelled to what is unreasonable 
on account of her child nor a father on account of his child.  And the heir of 
the father shall be obliged to do in like manner.  But if they choose to wean 
the child before the end of two years, by common consent, and on mutual 
consideration, it shall be no crime in them.  And if ye have a mind to provide 
a nurse for your children, it shall be no crime in you, in case ye fully pay 
what ye offer her, according to that which is just.  And fear GOD, and know 
that GOD seeth whatsoever ye do.
     Such of you as die, and leave wives, their wives must wait concerning 
themselves four months and ten days,b and when they shall have fulfilled their 
term, it shall be no crime in you, for that which they shall do with 
themselves,c according to what is reasonable.  GOD well knoweth that which ye 
     And it shall be no crime in you, whether ye make public overtures of 
marriage unto such women, within the said four months and ten days, or whether 
ye conceal such your designs in your minds: GOD knoweth that ye will remember 
them.  But make no promises unto them privately, unless ye speak honourable 
     and resolve not on the knot of marriage until the prescribed time be 
accomplished; and know that GOD knoweth that which is in your minds, therefore 
beware of him and know that GOD is gracious and merciful.
     It shall be no crime in you, if ye divorce your wives, so long as ye have 
not touched them, nor settled any dowry on them.  And provide for them (he who 
is at his ease must provide according to his circumstances) necessaries, 
according to what shall be reasonable.  This is a duty incumbent on the 
     But if ye divorce them before ye have touched them, and have already 
settled a dowry on them, ye shall give them half of what ye have settled, 
unless they release any part, or he release part in whose hand the knot of 
marriage is;d and if ye release the whole, it will approach nearer unto piety.  
And not forget liberality among you, for GOD seeth that which ye do.

	a  viz., By obliging them to purchase their liberty with part of their 
	b  That is to say, before they marry again; and this, not only for 
decency sake, but that it may be known whether they be with child by the 
deceased or not.
	c  That is, if they leave off their mourning weeds, and look out for new 
	d  i.e., Unless the wife agree to take less than half her dowry, or 
unless the husband be so generous as to give her more than half, or the whole, 
which is here approved of as most commendable.

     Carefully observe the appointed prayers, and the middle prayer,e and be 
assiduous therein, with devotion towards GOD.
     But if ye fear any danger, pray on foot or on horseback; and when ye are 
safe remember GOD, how he hath taught you what as yet ye knew not.
240	And such of you as shall die and leave wives ought to bequeath their 
wives a year's maintenance, without putting them out of their houses: but if 
they go out voluntarily, it shall be no crime in you, for that which they 
shall do with themselves, according to what shall be reasonable; GOD is mighty 
and wise.
     And unto those who are divorced, a reasonable provision is also due; this 
is a duty incumbent on those who fear GOD.
     Thus GOD declareth his signs unto you, that ye may understand.
     Hast thou not considered those, who left their habitations, (and they 
were thousands,) for fear of death?f  And GOD said unto them, Die; then he 
restored them to life, for GOD is gracious towards mankind; but the greater 
part of men do not give thanks.
     Fight for the religion of GOD, and know that GOD is he who heareth and 
     Who is he that will lend unto GOD on good usury?g verily he will double 
it unto him manifold; for GOD contracteth and extendeth his hand as he 
pleaseth, and to him shall ye return.
     Hast thou not considered the assembly of the children of Israel, after 
the time of Moses; when they said unto their prophet Samuel, Set a king over 
us, that we may fight for the religion of GOD.  The prophet answered, If ye 
are enjoined to go to war, will ye be near refusing to fight?  They answered, 
And what should ail us that we should not fight for the religion of GOD, 
seeing we are dispossessed of our habitations, and deprived of our children?  
But when they were enjoined to go to war, they turned back, except a few of 
them: and GOD knew the ungodly.
     And their prophet said unto them, Verily GOD hath set Talūt,h king over 
you: they answered, How shall he reign over us, seeing we are more worthy of 
the kingdom than he, neither is he possessed of great riches?  Samuel said, 
Verily GOD hath chosen him before you, and hath caused him to increase in 
knowledge and stature, for GOD giveth his kingdom unto whom he pleaseth; GOD 
is bounteous and wise.

	e  Yahya interprets this from a tradition of Mohammed, who, being asked 
which was the middle prayer, answered, The evening prayer, which was 
instituted by the prophet Solomon.  But Jallalo'ddin allows a greater 
lattitude, and supposes it may be the afternoon prayer, the morning prayer, 
the noon prayer, or any other.
	f  These were some of the children of Israel, who abandoned their 
dwellings because of a pestilence, or, as others say, to avoid serving in a 
religious war; but, as they fled, God struck them all dead in a certain 
valley.  About eight days or more after, when their bodies were corrupted, the 
prophet Ezekiel, the son of Buzi, happening to pass that way, at the sight of 
their bones wept; whereupon God said to him, Call to them, O Ezekiel, and I 
will restore them to life.  And accordingly on the prophet's call they all 
arose, and lived several years after; but they retained the colour and stench 
of dead corpses as long as they lived, and the clothes they wore changed as 
black as pitch, which qualities they transmitted to their posterity.1  As to 
the number of these Israelites the commentators are not agreed; they who 
reckon least say they were 3,000, and they who reckon most, 70,000.  This 
story seems to have been taken from Ezekiel's vision of the resurrection of 
dry bones.2
	Some of the Mohammedan writers will have Ezekiel to have been one of the 
judges of Israel, and to have succeeded Othoniel the son of Caleb.  They also 
call this prophet Ebn al ajūz, or the son of the old woman; because they say 
his mother obtained him by her prayers in her old age.3
	g  viz., By contributing towards the establishment of his true religion.
	h  So the Mohammedans name Saul.

	1  Jallalo'ddin, Yahya, Abulfeda, &c.		2  Ezek. xxxvii. 1-10.	
	3  Al Thalabi, Abu Ishak, &c.

     And their prophet said unto them, Verily the sign of his kingdom shall 
be, that the ark shall come unto you:i therein shall be tranquility from your 
LORD,k and the relicsl which have been left by the family of Moses and the 
family of Aaron; the angels shall bring it.  Verily this shall be a sign unto 
you, if ye believe.
     And when Talut departed with his soldiers he said, Verily GOD will prove 
you by the river: for he who drinketh thereof, shall not be on my side (but he 
who shall not taste thereof he shall be on my side), except he who drinketh a 
draught out of his hand.  And they drank thereof, except a few of them.m  And 
when they had passed the river, he and those who believed with him, they said, 
We have no strength to-day, against Jalutn and his forces.  But they who 
considered that they should meet GOD at the resurrection, said, How often hath 
a small army discomfited a great one, by the will of GOD! and GOD is with 
those who patiently persevere.
250	And when they went forth to battle against Jalut and his forces, they 
said, O LORD, pour on us patience, and confirm our feet, and help us against 
the unbelieving people.
     Therefore they discomfited them, by the will of GOD, and David slew 
Jalut.  And GOD gave him the kingdom and wisdom, and taught him his will;o and 
if GOD had not prevented men, the one by the other, verily the earth had been 
corrupted: but GOD is beneficent towards his creatures.
     These are the signs of GOD: we rehearse them unto thee with truth, and 
thou art surely one of those who have been sent by GOD. 
     These are the apostles; we have preferred some of them before others; 
some of them hath GOD spoken unto, and hath exalted the degree of others of 
them.  And we gave unto Jesus the son of Mary manifest signs, and strengthened 
him with the holy spirit.p  And if GOD had pleased, they who came after those 
apostles would not have contended among themselves, after manifest signs had 
been shown unto them.  But they fell to variance; therefore some of them 
believed, and some of them believed not; and if GOD had so pleased, they would 
not have contended among themselves; but GOD doth what he will.

	i  This ark, says Jallalo'ddin, contained the images of the prophets, 
and was sent down from heaven to Adam, and at length came to the Israelites, 
who put great confidence therein, and continually carried it in the front of 
their army, till it was taken by the Amalekites.  But on this occasion the 
angels brought it back, in the sight of all the people, and placed it at the 
feet of Talūt; who was thereupon unanimously acknowledged for their king.
	This relation seems to have arisen from some imperfect tradition of the 
taking and sending back the ark by the Philistines.4
	k  That is, because of the great confidence the Israelites placed in it, 
having won several battles by its miraculous assistance.  I imagine, however, 
that the Arabic word Sakīnat, which signifies tranquillity or security of 
mind, and is so understood by the commentators, may not improbably mean the 
divine presence or glory, which used to appear on the ark, and which the Jews 
express by the same word Shechinah.
	l  These were the shoes and rod of Moses, the mitre of Aaron, a pot of 
manna, and the broken pieces of the two tables of the law.5
	m  The number of those who drank out of their hands was about 313.1  It 
seems that Mohammed has here confounded Saul with Gideon, who by the divine 
direction took with him against the Midianites such of his army only as lapped 
water out of their hands, which were 300 men.2
	n  Or Goliath.
	o  Or what he pleased to teach him.  Yahya most rationally understands 
hereby the divine revelations which David received from GOD; but Jallalo'ddin 
the art of making coats of mail (which the Mohammedans believe was that 
prophet's peculiar trade), and the knowledge of the language of birds.
	p  See before p. 10, note k.

	4  I Sam. iv. v. and vi.		5  Jallalo'ddin.		1  Idem, 
Yahya.		2  Judges vii.

     O true believers, give alms of that which we have bestowed unto you, 
before the day cometh wherein there shall be no merchandizing, nor friendship, 
nor intercession.  The infidels are unjust doers.
     GOD! there is no GOD but he;q the living, the self-subsisting: neither 
slumber nor sleep seizeth him; to him belongeth whatsoever is in heaven, and 
on earth.  Who is he than can intercede with him, but through his good 
pleasure?  He knoweth that which is past, and that which is to come unto them, 
and they shall not comprehend anything of his knowledge, but so far as he 
pleaseth.  His throne is extended over heaven and earth,r and the preservation 
of both is no burden unto him.  He is the high, the mighty.
     Let there be no violence in religion.s  Now is right direction manifestly 
distinguished from deceit: whoever therefore shall deny Tagut,t and believe in 
GOD, he shall surely take hold on a strong handle, which shall not be broken; 
GOD is he who heareth and seeth.
     GOD is the patron of those who believe; he shall lead them out of 
darkness into light:
     but as to those who believe not, their patrons are Tagut; they shall lead 
them from the light into darkness; they shall be the companions of hell fire, 
they shall remain therein forever.
     Hast thou not considered him who disputed with Abraham concerning his 
LORD,u because GOD had given him the kingdom?  When Abraham said, My LORD is 
he who giveth life, and killeth: he answered, I give life, and I kill.  
Abraham said, Verily GOD bringeth the sun from the east, now do thou bring it 
from the west.  Whereupon the infidel was confounded; for GOD directeth not 
the ungodly people.
260	Or hast thou not considered how he behaved who passed by a city which 
had been destroyed, even to her foundations?x  He said, How shall GOD quicken 
this city, after she hath been dead?  And GOD caused him to die for an hundred 
years, and afterwards raised him to life.  And GOD said, how long hast thou 
tarried here?  He answered, A day, or part of a day.  GOD said, Nay, thou hast 
tarried here a hundred years.  Now look on thy food and thy drink, they are 
not yet corrupted; and look on thine ass: and this have we done that we might 
make thee a sign unto men.  And look on the bones of thine ass, how we raise 
them, and afterwards clothe them with flesh.  And when this was shown unto 
him, he said, I know that GOD is able to do all things.

	q  The following seven lines contain a magnificent description of the 
divine majesty and providence; but it must not be supposed the translation 
comes up to the dignity of the original.  This passage is justly admired by 
the Mohammedans, who recite it in their prayers; and some of them wear it 
about them, engraved on an agate or other precious stone.3
	r  This throne, in Arabic called Corsi, is by the Mohammedans supposed 
to be God's tribunal, or seat of justice; being placed under that other called 
al Arsh, which they say is his imperial throne.  The Corsi allegorically 
signifies the divine providence, which sustains and governs the heaven and the 
earth, and is infinitely above human comprehension.4
	s  This passage was particularly directed to some of Mohammed's first 
proselytes, who, having sons that had been brought up in idolatry or Judaism, 
would oblige them to embrace Mohammedism by force.1
	t  This word properly signifies an idol, or whatever is worshipped 
besides GOD-particularly the two idols of the Meccans, Allāt and al Uzza; and 
also the devil, or any seducer.
	u  This was Nimrod, who, as the commentators say, to prove his power of 
life and death by ocular demonstration, caused two men to be brought before 
him at the same time, one of whom he slew, and saved the other alive.  As to 
this tyrant's persecution of Abraham, see chapter 21, and the notes thereon.
	x  The person here meant was Ozair or Ezra, who riding on an ass by the 
ruins of Jerusalem, after it had been destroyed by the Chaldeans, doubted in 
his mind by what means God could raise the city and its inhabitants again; 
whereupon God caused him to die, and he remained in that condition 100 years; 
at the end of which God restored him to life, and he found a basket of figs 
and a cruse of wine he had with him not in the least spoiled or corrupted; but 
his ass was dead, the bones only remaining, and these, while the prophet 
looked on, were raised and clothed with flesh, becoming an ass again, which 
being inspired with life, began immediately to bray.2
	This apocryphal story may perhaps have taken its rise from Nehemiah's 
viewing of the ruins of Jerusalem.3

	3  Vide Bobov. de Prec. Moham. p. 5, et Reland. Dissert. de Gemmis Arab 
p. 235, 239.		4  Vide D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient. Art. Corsi.
1  Jallalo'ddin.		2  Jallalo'ddin, Yahya, &c   See D'Herbel. Bibl. 
Orient. Art. Ozair.		3  Nehem. ii. 12, &c.

     And when Abraham said, O LORD, show me how thou wilt raise the dead;y God 
said, Dost thou not yet believe?  He answered, Yea, but I ask this that my 
heart may rest at ease.  GOD said, take therefore four birds, and divide 
them;z then lay a part of them on every mountain; then call them, and they 
shall come swiftly unto thee: and know that GOD is mighty and wise.
     The similitude of those who lay out their substance, for advancing the 
religion of GOD, is as a grain of corn which produceth seven ears, and in 
every ear an hundred grains; for GOD giveth twofold unto whom he pleaseth: GOD 
is bounteous and wise.
     They who lay out their substance for the religion of GOD, and afterwards 
follow not what they have so laid out by reproaches or mischief,a they shall 
have their reward with their LORD; upon them shall no fear come, neither shall 
they be grieved.
     A fair speech and to forgive, is better than alms followed by mischief.  
GOD is rich and merciful.
     O true believers, make not your alms of none effect by reproaching, or 
mischief, as he who layeth out what he hath to appear unto men to give alms, 
and believeth not in GOD and the last day.  The likeness of such a one is as a 
flint covered with earth, on which a violent rain falleth, and leaveth it 
hard.  They cannot prosper in anything which they have gained, for GOD 
directeth not the unbelieving people.
     And the likeness of those who lay out their substance from a desire to 
please GOD, and for an establishment for their souls, is as a garden on a 
hill, on which a violent rain falleth, and it bringeth forth its fruits 
twofold; and if a violent rain falleth not on it, yet the dew falleth thereon: 
and GOD seeth that which ye do.
     Doth any of you desire to have a garden of palm-trees and vines,b through 
which rivers flow, wherein ye may have all kinds of fruits, and that he may 
attain to old age, and have a weak offspring? then a violent fiery wind shall 
strike it, so that it shall be burned.  Thus GOD declareth his signs unto you, 
that ye may consider.
     O true believers, bestow alms of the good things which ye have gained, 
and of that which we have produced for you out of the earth, and choose not 
the bad thereof, to give it in alms,

	y  The occasion of this request of Abraham is said to have been on a 
doubt proposed to him by the devil, in human form, how it was possible for the 
several parts of the corpse of a man which lay on the sea-shore, and had been 
partly devoured by the wild beasts, the birds, and the fish, to be brought 
together at the resurrection.4
	z  These birds, according to the commentators, were an eagle (a dove, 
say others), a peacock, a raven and a cock, which Abraham cut to pieces, and 
mingled their flesh and feathers together, or, as some tell us, pounded all in 
a mortar, and dividing the mass into four parts, laid them on so many 
mountains, but kept the heads, which he had preserved whole, in his hand.  
Then he called them each by their name, and immediately one part flew to the 
other, till they all recovered their first shape, and then came to be joined 
to their respective heads.1
	This seems to be taken from Abraham's sacrifice of birds mentioned by 
Moses,2 with some additional circumstances.
	a  i.e., Either by reproaching the person whom they have relieved with 
what they have done for him, or by exposing his poverty to his prejudice.3
	b  This garden is an emblem of alms given out of hypocrisy, or attended 
with reproaches, which perish, and will be of no service hereafter to the 

	4  See D'Herbelot, p. 13.		1  Jallalo'ddin.  See D'Herbelot, 
ubi supra.		2  Gen. xv		3  Jallalo'ddin.
4  Idem.

     such as ye would not accept yourselves, otherwise than by connivance:c 
and know that GOD is rich and worthy to be praised.
270	The devil threateneth you with poverty, and commandeth you filthy 
covetousness; but GOD promiseth you pardon from himself and abundance: GOD is 
bounteous and wise.
     He giveth wisdom unto whom he pleaseth; and he unto whom wisdom is given 
hath received much good: but none will consider, except the wise of heart.
     And whatever alms ye shall give, or whatever vow ye shall vow, verily GOD 
knoweth it; but the ungodly shall have none to help them.  If ye make your 
alms to appear, it is well; but if ye conceal them, and give them unto the 
poor, this will be better for you, and will atone for your sins; and GOD is 
well informed of that which ye do.
     The direction of them belongeth not unto thee; but GOD directeth whom he 
pleaseth.  The good that ye shall give in alms shall redound unto yourselves; 
and ye shall not give unless out of desire of seeing the face of GOD.d  And 
what good thing ye shall give in alms, it shall be repaid you, and ye shall 
not be treated unjustly; unto the poor who are wholly employed in fighting for 
the religion of GOD, and cannot go to and fro on the earth; whom the ignorant 
man thinketh rich, because of their modesty: thou shalt know them by this 
mark, they ask not men with importunity; and what good ye shall give in alms, 
verily GOD knoweth it.
     They who distribute alms of their substance night and day, in private and 
in public, shall have their reward with the LORD; on them shall no fear come, 
neither shall they be grieved.
     They who devour usury shall not arise from the dead, but as he ariseth 
whom Satan hath infected by a touch:e this shall happen to them because they 
say, Truly selling is but as usury: and yet GOD hath permitted selling and 
forbidden usury.  He therefore who when there cometh unto him an admonition 
from his LORD abstaineth from usury for the future, shall have what is past 
forgiven him, and his affair belongeth unto GOD.  But whoever returneth to 
usury, they shall be the companions of hell fire, they shall continue therein 
     GOD shall take his blessing from usury, and shall increase alms: for GOD 
loveth no infidel, or ungodly person.  But they who believe and do that which 
is right, and observe the stated times of prayer, and pay their legal alms, 
they shall have their reward with their LORD: there shall come no fear on 
them, neither shall they be grieved.
     O true believers, fear GOD, and remit that which remaineth of usury,f if 
ye really believe;
     but if ye do it not, hearken unto war, which is declared against you from 
GOD and his apostle: yet if ye repent, ye shall have the capital of your 
money.  Deal not unjustly with others, and ye shall not be dealt with 

	c  That is, on having some amends made by the seller of such goods, 
either by abatement of the price, or giving something else to the buyer to 
make up the value.
	d  i.e., For the sake of a reward hereafter, and not for any worldly 
	e  viz., Like demoniacs or possessed persons, that is, in great horror 
and distraction of mind and convulsive agitation of body.
	f  Or the interest due before usury was prohibited.  For this some of 
Mohammed's followers exacted of their debtors, supposing they lawfully might.2

				1  Jallalo'ddin.		2  Idem.

     If there be any debtor under a difficulty of paying his debt, let his 
creditor wait till it be easy for him to do it; but if ye remit it as alms, it 
will be better for you, if ye knew it.
280	And fear the day wherein ye shall return unto GOD; then shall every soul 
be paid what it hath gained, and they shall not be treated unjustly.
     O true believers, when ye bind yourselves one to the other in a debt for 
a certain time, write it down; and let a writer write between you according to 
justice, and let not the writer refuse writing according to what GOD hath 
taught him; but let him write, and let him who oweth the debt dictate, and let 
him fear GOD his LORD, and not diminish aught thereof.  But if he who oweth 
the debt be foolish, or weak, or be not able to dictate himself, let his 
agentg dictate according to equity; and call to witness two witnesses of your 
neighboring men; but if there be not two men, let there be a man and two women 
of those whom ye shall choose for witnesses: if one of those women should 
mistake, the other of them will cause her to recollect.  And the witnesses 
shall not refuse, whensoever they shall be called.  And disdain not to write 
it down, be it a large debt, or be it a small one, until its time of payment: 
this will be more just in the sight of GOD, and more right for bearing 
witness, and more easy, that ye may not doubt.  But if it be a present bargain 
which ye transact between yourselves, it shall be no crime in you, if ye write 
it not down.  And take witnesses when ye sell one to the other, and let no 
harm be done to the writer, nor to the witness; which if ye do, it will surely 
be injustice in you: and fear GOD, and GOD will instruct you, for GOD knoweth 
all things.
     And if ye be on a journey, and find no writer, let pledges be taken: but 
if one of you trust the other, let him who is trusted return what he is 
trusted with, and fear GOD his LORD.  And conceal not the testimony, for he 
who concealeth it hath surely a wicked heart: GOD knoweth that which ye do.
     Whatever is in heaven and on earth is GOD'S: and whether ye manifest that 
which is in your minds, or conceal it, GOD will call you to account for it, 
and will forgive whom he pleaseth, and will punish whom he pleaseth, for GOD 
is almighty.
     The apostle believeth in that which hath been sent down unto him from his 
LORD, and the faithful also.  Every one of them believeth in GOD, and his 
angels, and his scriptures, and his apostles: we make no distinction at all 
between his apostles.h  And they say, We have heard, and do obey: we implore 
thy mercy, O LORD, for unto thee must we return.
     GOD will not force any one beyond its capacity: it shall have the good 
which it gaineth, and it shall suffer the evil which it gaineth.  O LORD, 
punish us not, if we forget, or act sinfully: O LORD, lay not on us a burden 
like that which thou hast laid on those who have been before us;i neither make 
us, O LORD, to bear what we have not strength to bear, but be favorable unto 
us, and spare us, and be merciful unto us.  Thou art our patron, help us 
therefore against the unbelieving nations.

	g  Whoever manages his affairs, whether his father, heir, guardian, or 
	h  But this, say the Mohammedans, the Jews do, who receive Moses but 
reject Jesus; and the Christians, who receive both those prophets, but reject 
	i  That is, on the Jews, who, as the commentators tell us, were ordered 
to kill a man by way of atonement, to give one-fourth of their substance in 
alms, and to cut off an unclean ulcerous part,3 and were forbidden to eat fat, 
or animals that divided the hoof, and were obliged to observe the sabbath, and 
other particulars wherein the Mohammedans are at liberty.4

		1  Jallalo'ddin.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.		4  




     AL. M.l  There is no GOD but GOD, the living, the self-subsisting:
     he hath sent down unto thee the book of the Koran with truth, confirming 
that which was revealed before it; for he had formerly sent down the law, and 
the gospel a direction unto men; and he had also sent down the distinction 
between good and evil.
     Verily those who believe not the signs of GOD shall suffer a grievous 
punishment; for GOD is mighty, able to revenge.
     Surely nothing is hidden from GOD, of that which is on earth, or in 
heaven: it is he who formeth you in the wombs, as he pleaseth; there is no GOD 
but he, the mighty, the wise.
     It is he who hath sent down unto thee the book, wherein are some verses 
clear to be understood, they are the foundation of the book; and others are 
parabolical.m  But they whose hearts are perverse will follow that which is 
parabolical therein, out of love of schism, and a desire of the interpretation 
thereof; yet none knoweth the interpretation thereof, except God.  But they 
who are well grounded in the knowledge say, We believe therein, the whole is 
from our LORD; and none will consider except the prudent.
     O LORD, cause not our hearts to swerve from truth, after thou hast 
directed us: and give us from thee mercy, for thou art he who giveth.
     O LORD, thou shalt surely gather mankind together, unto a day of 
resurrection: there is no doubt of it, for GOD will not be contrary to the 
     As for the infidels, their wealth shall not profit them anything, nor 
their children, against GOD: they shall be the fuel of hell fire.
     According to the wont of the people of Pharaoh, and of those who went 
before them, they charged our signs with a lie; but GOD caught them in their 
wickedness, and GOD is severe in punishing.
10	Say unto those who believe not, Ye shall be overcome, and thrown 
together into hell; and an unhappy couch shall it be.
     Ye have already had a miracle shown you in two armies, which attacked 
each other:n one army fought for GOD'S true religion, but the other were 
infidels; they saw the faithful twice as many as themselves in their eyesight; 
for GOD strengthened with his help whom he pleaseth.  Surely herein was an 
example unto men of understanding.

	k  This name is given in the Korān to the father of the Virgin Mary.  
See below, p. 35.
	l  For the meaning of these letters the reader is referred to the 
Preliminary Discourse, Sect. III.
	m  This passage is translated according to the exposition of al 
Zamakhshari and al Beidāwi, which seems to be the truest.
	The contents of the Korān are here distinguished into such passages as 
are to be taken in the literal sense, and such as require a figurative 
acceptation.  The former being plain and obvious to be understood, compose the 
fundamental part, or, as the original expresses it, the mother of the book, 
and contain the principal doctrines and precepts; agreeably to and 
consistently with which, those passages which are wrapt up in metaphors, and 
delivered in an enigmatical, allegorical style, are always to be interpreted.5
	n  The sign or miracle here meant, was the victory gained by Mohammed in 
the second year of the Hejra, over the idolatrous Meccans, headed by Abu 
Sofiān, in the valley of Bedr, which is situate near the sea, between Mecca 
and Medina.  Mohammed's forces consisted of no more than three hundred and 
nineteen men, but the enemy's army of near a thousand, notwithstanding which 
odds he put them to flight, having killed seventy of the principal Koreish, 
and taken as many prisoners, with the loss of only fourteen of his own men.1  
This was the first victory obtained by the prophet, and though it may seem no 
very considerable action, yet it

	5  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. III.		1  Elmacin. p. 5.  Hottinger. 
Hist. Orient. l. 2, c. 4.  Abulfed. Vit. Moham. p. 56, &c.  Prideaux's Life of 
Mahom. p. 71, &c.

     The love and eager desire of wives, and children, and sums heaped up of 
gold and silver, and excellent horses, and cattle, and land, is prepared for 
men: this is the provision of the present life; but unto GOD shall be the most 
excellent return.
     Say, Shall I declare unto you better things than this?  For those who are 
devout are prepared with their LORD gardens through which rivers flow; therein 
shall they continue forever: and they shall enjoy wives free from impurity, 
and the favor of GOD; for GOD regardeth his servants
     who say, O LORD, we do sincerely believe; forgive us therefore our sins, 
and deliver us from the pain of hell fire:
     the patient, and the lovers of truth, and the devout, and the almsgivers, 
and those who ask pardon early in the morning.
     GOD hath borne witness that there is no GOD but he; and the angels, and 
those who are endowed with wisdom, profess the same; who executeth 
righteousness; there is no GOD but he; the mighty, the wise.
     Verily the true religion in the sight of GOD is Islām;o and they who had 
received the scriptures dissented not therefrom, until after the knowledge of 
God's unity had come unto them, out of envy among themselves; but whosoever 
believeth not in the signs of GOD, verily GOD will be swift in bringing him to 
     If they dispute with thee, say, I have resigned myself unto GOD, and he 
who followeth me doth the same;
     and say unto them who have received the scriptures, and to the ignorant,p 
Do ye profess the religion of Islam? now if they embrace Islam, they are 
surely directed; but if they turn their backs, verily unto thee belongeth 
preaching only; for GOD regardeth his servants.
20	And unto those who believe not in the signs of GOD, and slay the 
prophets without a cause, and put those men to death who teach justice; 
denounce unto them a painful punishment.
     These are they whose works perish in this world, and in that which is to 
come; and they shall have none to help them.

was of great advantage to him, and the foundation of all his future power and 
success.  For which reason it is famous in the Arabian history, and more than 
once vaunted in the Korān,2 as an effect of the divine assistance.  The 
miracle, it is said, consisted in three things:  1. Mohammed, by the direction 
of the angel Gabriel, took a handful of gravel and threw it toward the enemy 
in the attack, saying, May their faces be confounded; whereupon they 
immediately turned their backs and fled.  But though the prophet seemingly 
threw the gravel himself, yet it is told in the Korān,3 that it was not he, 
but God, who threw it, that is to say, by the ministry of his angel.  2.  The 
Mohammedan troops seemed to the infidels to be twice as many in number as 
themselves, which greatly discouraged them.  And 3.  God sent down to their 
assistance first a thousand and afterwards three thousand angels, led by 
Gabriel, mounted on his horse Haizūm; and, according to the Korān,4 these 
celestial auxiliaries really did all the execution, though Mohammed's men 
imagined themselves did it, and fought stoutly at the same time.
	o  The proper name of the Mohammedan religion, which signifies the 
resigning or devoting one's self entirely to GOD and his service.  This they 
say is the religion which all the prophets were sent to teach, being founded 
on the unity of GOD.5
	p  i.e., The pagan Arabs, who had no knowledge of the scriptures.1

	2  See this chapter below, and c. 8 and 32.		3  Cap. 8, not far 
from the beginning.		4  Ibid.
5  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.		1  Idem.

     Hast thou not observed those unto whom part of the scripture was given?q  
They were called unto the book of GOD, that it might judge between them;r then 
some of them turned their backs, and retired afar off.
     This they did because they said, the fire of hell shall by no means touch 
us, but for a certain number of days;s and that which they had falsely devised 
hath deceived them in their religion.
     How then will it be with them, when we shall gather them together at the 
day of judgment,t of which there is no doubt; and every soul shall be paid 
that which it hath gained, neither shall they be treated unjustly?
     Say, O GOD, who possessest the kingdom; thou givest the kingdom unto whom 
thou wilt, and thou takest away the kingdom from whom thou wilt: thou exaltest 
whom thou wilt, and thou humblest whom thou wilt: in thy hand is good, for 
thou art almighty.
     Thou makest the night to succeed the day: thou bringest forth the living 
out of the dead, and thou bringest forth the dead out of the living;u and 
providest food for whom thou wilt without measure.
     Let not the faithful take the infidels for their protectors, rather than 
the faithful: he who doth this shall not be protected of GOD at all; unless ye 
fear any danger from them: but GOD warneth you to beware of himself; for unto 
GOD must ye return.  Say, Whether ye conceal that which is in your breasts, or 
whether ye declare it, GOD knoweth it; for he knoweth whatever is in heaven, 
and whatever is on earth: GOD is almighty.
     On the last day every soul shall find the good which it hath wrought, 
present; and the evil which it hath wrought, it shall wish that between itself 
and that were a wide distance: but GOD warneth you to beware of himself; for 
GOD is gracious unto his servants.
     Say, If ye love GOD, follow me: then GOD shall love you, and forgive you 
your sins; for GOD is gracious and merciful.  Say, Obey GOD, and his apostle; 
but if ye go back, verily GOD loveth not the unbelievers.

	q  That is, the Jews.
	r  This passage was revealed on occasion of a dispute Mohammed had with 
some Jews, which is differently related by the commentators.
	Al Beidāwi says that Mohammed going one day into a Jewish synagogue, 
Naļm Ebn Amru and al Hareth Ebn Zeid asked him what religion he was of?  To 
which he answering, "Of the religion of Abraham;" they replied, "Abraham was a 
Jew."  But on Mohammed's proposing that the Pentateuch might decide the 
question, they would by no means agree to it.
	But Jallalo'ddin tells us that two persons of the Jewish religion having 
committed adultery, their punishment was referred to Mohammed, who gave 
sentence that they should be stoned, according to the law of Moses.  This the 
Jews refused to submit to, alleging there was no such command in the 
Pentateuch; but on Mohammed's appealing to the book, the said law was found 
therein.  Whereupon the criminals were stoned, to the great mortification of 
the Jews.
	It is very remarkable that this law of Moses concerning the stoning of 
adulterers is mentioned in the New Testament2 (though I know some dispute the 
authenticity of that whole passage), but is not now to be found, either in the 
Hebrew or Samaritan Pentateuch, or in the Septuagint; it being only said that 
such shall be put to death.3  This omission is insisted on by the Mohammedans 
as one instance of the corruption of the law of Moses by the Jews.
	It is also observable that there was a verse once extant in the Korān, 
commanding adulterers to be stoned; and the commentators say the words only 
are abrogated, the sense or law still remaining in force.4
	s  i.e., Forty; the time their forefathers worshipped the calf.5  Al 
Beidāwi adds, that some of them pretended their punishment was to last but 
seven days, that is, a day for every thousand years which they supposed the 
world was to endure; and that they imagined they were to be so mildly dealt 
with, either by reason of the intercession of their fathers the prophets, or 
because GOD had promised Jacob that his offspring should be punished but 
	t  The Mohammedans have a tradition that the first banner of the 
infidels that shall be set up, on the day of judgment, will be that of the 
Jews; and that GOD will first reproach them with their wickedness, over the 
heads of those who are present, and then order them to hell.6
	u  As a man from seed, and a bird from an egg; and vice versā.1

	2  John viii. 5.		3  Levit. xx. 10.  See Whiston's Essay towards 
restoring the true text of the Old Test. p. 99, 100.
4  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. III.		5  See before, p. 10, note g.	
	6  Al Beidåwi.		1  Jallalo'ddin

30	GOD hath surely chosen Adam, and Noah, and the family of Abraham, and 
the family of Imrānx above the rest of the world; a race descending the one 
from the other: GOD is he who heareth and knoweth.
     Remember when the wife of Imrāny said, LORD, verily I have vowed unto 
thee that which is in my womb, to be dedicated to thy service;z accept it 
therefore of me; for thou art he who heareth and knoweth.  And when she was 
delivered of it, she said, LORD, verily I have brought forth a female (and GOD 
well knew what she had brought forth), and a male is not as a female.a  I have 
called her MARY; and I commend her to thy protection, and also her issue, 
against Satan driven away with stones.b

	x  Or Amrān, is the name of two several persons, according to the 
Mohammedan tradition.  One was the father of Moses and Aaron; and the other 
was the father of Moses and Aaron; and the other was the father of the Virgin 
Mary;2 but he is called by some Christian writers Joachim.  The commentators 
suppose the first, or rather both of them, to be meant in this place; however, 
the person intended in the next passage, it is agreed, was the latter; who 
besides Mary the mother of Jesus, had also a son named Aaron,3 and another 
sister, named Ishį (or Elizabeth), who married Zacharias, and was the mother 
of John the Baptist; whence that prophet and Jesus are usually called by the 
Mohammedans, The two sons of the aunt, or the cousins german.
	From the identity of names it has been generally imagined by Christian 
writers4 that the Korān here confounds Mary the mother of Jesus, with Mary or 
Miriam the sister of Moses and Aaron; which intolerable anachronism, if it 
were certain, is sufficient of itself to destroy the pretended authority of 
this book.  But though Mohammed may be supposed to have been ignorant enough 
in ancient history and chronology to have committed so gross a blunder, yet I 
do not see how it can be made out from the words of the Korān.  For it does 
not follow, because two persons have the same name, and have each a father and 
brother who bear the same names, that they must therefore necessarily be the 
same person: besides, such a mistake is inconsistent with a number of other 
places in the Korān, whereby it manifestly appears that Mohammed well knew and 
asserted that Moses preceded Jesus several ages.  And the commentators 
accordingly fail not to tell us that there had passed about one thousand eight 
hundred years between Amrān the father of Moses, and Amrān the father of the 
Virgin Mary: they also make them the sons of different persons; the first, 
they say, was the son of Yeshar, or Izhar (though he was really his brother),5 
the son of Kāhath, the son of Levi; and the other was the son of Mathān,6 
whose genealogy they trace, but in a very corrupt and imperfect manner, up to 
David, and thence to Adam.7
	It must be observed that though the Virgin Mary is called in the Korān1 
the sister of Aaron, yet she is nowhere called the sister of Moses; however, 
some Mohammedan writers have imagined that the same individual Mary, the 
sister of Moses, was miraculously preserved alive from his time till that of 
Jesus Christ, purposely to become the mother of the latter.2
	y  The Imrān here mentioned was the father of the Virgin Mary, and his 
wife's name was Hannah, or Ann, the daughter of Fakudh.  This woman, say the 
commentators, being aged and barren, on seeing a bird feed her young ones, 
became very desirous of issue, and begged a child of GOD, promising to 
consecrate it to his service in the temple; whereupon she had a child, but it 
proved a daughter.3
	z  The Arabic word is free, but here signifies particularly one that is 
free or detached from all worldly desires and occupations, and wholly devoted 
to GOD'S service.4
	a  Because a female could not minister in the temple as a male could.5
	b  This expression alludes to a tradition, that Abraham, when the devil 
tempted him to disobey God in not sacrificing his son, drove the fiend away by 
throwing stones at him; in memory of which, the Mohammedans, at the pilgrimage 
of Mecca, throw a certain number of stones at the devil, with certain 
ceremonies, in the valley of Mina.6
	It is not improbable that the pretended immaculate conception of the 
Virgin Mary is intimated in this passage; for according to a tradition of 
Mohammed, every person that comes into the world is touched at his birth by 
the devil, and therefore cries out: Mary and her son only excepted, between 
whom and the evil spirit God placed a veil, so that his touch did not reach 
them.7  And for this reason, they say, neither of them were guilty of any sin, 
like the rest of the children of Adam:8 which peculiar grace they obtained by 
virtue of this recommendation of them by Hannah to God's protection.

	2  Al Zamakhshari, al Beidāwi.		3  Kor. c. 19.		4  
Vide Reland. de Rel. Moh. p. 211  Marracc. in Alc. p. 115, &c.  Prideaux, 
Letter to the Deists, p. 185.		5  Exod. vi. 18.		6  Al Zamakh. al 
Beidāwi.		7  Vide Reland. ubi sup.  D'Herbelot, Bibl. Orient. p. 583.  
1 Cap. 19.		2  Vide Guadagnol. Apolog. pro Rel. Christ. contra Ahmed Ebn 
Zein al Abedin. p. 279.
3  Al Beidāwi, al Thalabi.		4  Jallalo'ddin, al Zamakhshari.	
	5  Jallalo'ddin.		6  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.
7  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.		8  Kitada.

     Therefore the LORD accepted her with a gracious acceptance,c and caused 
her to bear an excellent offspring.  And Zacharias took care of the child; 
whenever Zacharias went into the chamber to her, he found provisions with 
her:d and he said, O Mary, whence hadst thou this? she answered, This is from 
GOD, for GOD provideth for whom he pleaseth without measure.e
     There Zacharias called on his LORD, and said, LORD, give me from thee a 
good offspring, for thou art the hearer of prayer.  And the angelsf called to 
him, while he stood praying in the chamber,
     saying, Verily GOD promiseth thee a son named John, who shall bear 
witness to the Wordg which cometh from GOD; and honourable person, chaste,h 
and one of the righteous prophets.
     He answered, LORD, how shall I have a son, when old age hath overtaken 
me,i and my wife is barren?  The angel said, So GOD doth that which he 
     Zacharias answered, LORD, give me a sign.  The angel said, Thy sign shall 
be, that thou shalt speak unto no mank for three days, otherwise than by 
gesture: remember thy LORD often, and praise him evening and morning.
     And when the angels said, O Mary, verily GOD hath chosen thee, and hath 
purified thee and hath chosen thee above all the women of the world:
     O Mary, be devout towards thy LORD, and worship, and bow down with those 
who bow down.
     This is a secret history: we reveal it unto thee, although thou wast not 
present with them when they threw in their rods to cast lots which of them 
should have the education of Mary;l neither wast thou with them, when they 
strove among themselves.
40	When the angels said; O Mary, verily GOD sendeth thee good tidings, that 
thou shalt bear the Word proceeding from himself; his name shall be CHRIST 
JESUS the son of Mary, honourable in this world and in the world to come, and 
one of those who approach near to the presence of GOD;

	c  Though the child happened not to be a male, yet her mother presented 
her to the priests who had the care of the temple, as one dedicated to GOD; 
and they having received her, she was committed to the care of Zacharias, as 
will be observed by-and-bye, and he built her an apartment in the temple, and 
supplied her with necessaries.9
	d  The commentators say that none went into Mary's apartment but 
Zacharias himself, and that he locked seven doors upon her, yet he found she 
had always winter fruits in summer, and summer fruits in winter.10
	e  There is a story of Fātema, Mohammed's daughter, that she once 
brought two loaves and a piece of flesh to her father, who returned them to 
her, and having called for her again, when she uncovered the dish, it was full 
of bread and meat; and on Mohammed's asking her whence she had it, she 
answered in the words of this passage: This is from GOD; for GOD provideth for 
whom he pleaseth without measure.  Whereupon he blessed GOD, who thus favoured 
her, as he had the most excellent of the daughters of Israel.1
	f  Though the word be in the plural, yet the commentators say it was the 
angel Gabriel only.  The same is to be understood where it occurs in the 
following passages.
	g  That is, Jesus, who, al Beidāwi says, is so called because he was 
conceived by the word or command of GOD without a father.
	h  The original word signifies one who refrains not only from women, but 
from all other worldly delights and desires.  Al Beidāwi mentions a tradition, 
that during his childhood some boys invited him to play, but he refused, 
saying that he was not created to play.
	i  Zacharias was then ninety-nine years old, and his wife eighty-nine.2
	k  Though he could not speak to anybody else, yet his tongue was at 
liberty to praise GOD as he is directed to do by the following words.
	l  When Mary was first brought to the temple, the priests, because she 
was the daughter of one of their chiefs, disputed among themselves who should 
have the education of her.  Zacharias insisted that he ought to be preferred, 
because he had married her aunt; but the others not consenting that it should 
be so, they agreed to decide the matter by casting of lots; whereupon twenty-
seven of them went to the river Jordan and threw in their rods (or arrows 
without heads or feathers, such as the Arabs used for the same purpose), on 
which they had written some passages of the law; but they all sank except that 
of Zacharias, which floated on the water; and he had thereupon the care of the 
child committed to him.3

	9  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.  Vide Lud. de Dieu, in not. ad Hist. 
Christi Xaverii, p. 542.			10  Al Beidāwi.  Vide de Dieu, ubi 
sup. p. 548.		1  Al Beidāwi		2  Idem.		3  Idem.  
Jallalo'ddin, &c.

     and he shall speak unto men in the cradle,m and when he is grown up;n and 
he shall be one of the righteous:
     she answered, LORD, how shall I have a son, since a man hath not touched 
me? the angel said, So GOD createth that which he pleaseth: when he decreeth a 
thing, he only saith unto it, Be, and it is:
     GOD shall teach him the scripture, and wisdom, and the law, and the 
gospel; and shall appoint him his apostle to the children of Israel; and he 
shall say, Verily I come unto you with a sign from your LORD; for I will make 
before you, of clay, as it were the figure of a bird;o then I will breathe 
thereon, and it shall become a bird, by the permission of GOD;p and I will 
heal him that hath been blind from his birth; and the leper: and I will raise 
the deadq by the permission of GOD: and I will prophesy unto you what ye eat, 
and what ye lay up for store in your houses.  Verily herein will be a sign 
unto you, if ye believe.
     And I come to confirm the law which was revealed before me and to allow 
unto you as lawful part of that which hath been forbidden you:r and I come 
unto you with a sign from your LORD; therefore fear GOD, and obey me.  Verily 
GOD is my LORD, and your LORD; therefore serve him.  This is the right way.

	m  Besides an instance of this given in the Korān itself,1 which I shall 
not here anticipate, a Mohammedan writer, (of no very great credit, indeed) 
tells two stories, one of Jesus's speaking while in his mother's womb, to 
reprove her cousin Joseph for his unjust suspicions of her;2 and another of 
his giving an answer to the same person soon after he was born.  For Joseph 
being sent by Zacharias to seek Mary (who had gone out of the city by night to 
conceal her delivery) and having found her began to expostulate with her, but 
she made no reply; whereupon the child spoke these words:  Rejoice, O Joseph, 
and be of good cheer; for God hath brought me forth from the darkness of the 
womb, to the light of the world; and I shall go to the children of Israel, and 
invite them to the obedience of God.3
	These seem all to have been taken from some fabulous traditions of the 
eastern Christians, one of which is preserved to us in the spurious gospel of 
the Infancy of Christ; where we read that Jesus spoke while yet in the cradle, 
and said to his mother, Verily I am Jesus the Son of God, the word which thou 
hast brought forth, as the angel Gabriel did declare unto thee; and my father 
hath sent me to save the world.4
	n  The Arabic word properly signifies a man in full age, that is, 
between thirty or thirty-four, and fifty-one; and the passage may relate to 
Christ's preaching here on earth.  But as he had scarce attained this age when 
he was taken up into heaven, the commentators choose to understand it of his 
second coming.5
	o  Some say it was a bat,6 though others suppose Jesus made several 
birds of different sorts.
	This circumstance is also taken from the following fabulous tradition, 
which may be found in the spurious gospel above mentioned.  Jesus being seven 
years old, and at play with several children of his age, they made several 
figures of birds and beasts, for their diversion, of clay; and each preferring 
his own workmanship, Jesus told them, that he would make his walk and leap; 
which accordingly, at his command, they did.  He made also several figures of 
sparrows and other birds, which flew about or stood on his hands as he ordered 
them, and also ate and drank when he offered them meat and drink.  The 
children telling this to their parents, were forbidden to play any more with 
Jesus, whom they held to be a sorcerer.8
	p  The commentators observe that these words are added here, and in the 
next sentence, lest it should be thought Jesus did these miracles by his own 
power, or was GOD.9
	q  Jallalo'ddin mentions three persons whom Christ restored to life, and 
who lived several years after, and had children, viz., Lazarus, the widow's 
son, and the publican's (I suppose he means the ruler of the synagogue's) 
daughter.  He adds that he also raised Shem the son of Noah, who, as another 
writes10 thinking he had been called to judgment, came out of his grave with 
his head half grey, whereas men did not grow grey in his days; after which he 
immediately died again.
	r  Such as the eating of fish that have neither fins nor scales, the 
caul and fat of animals, and camel's flesh, and to work on the sabbath.  These 
things, say the commentators, being arbitrary institutions in the law of 
Moses, were abrogated by Jesus; as several of the same kind, instituted by the 
latter, have been since abrogated by Mohammed.1

	1  Cap. 19.		2  Vide Sikii notas in Evang. Infant. p. 5.	
	3  Al Kessai, apud eundem		4  Evang. Infant. p. 5.		5  
Jallalo'ddin.  Al Beidāwi.		6  Jallalo'ddin.		7  Al Thalabi	
	8  Evang. Infant. p. 111, &c		9  Al Beidāwi, &c.		10  Al 
Thalabi.		1  Al Beidāwi.  Jallalo'ddin.

     But when Jesus perceived their unbelief, he said, Who will be my helpers 
towards GOD?  The apostles answered,s We will be the helpers of GOD; we 
believe in GOD, and do thou bear witness that we are true believers.
     O LORD, we believe in that which thou hast sent down, and we have 
followed thy apostle; write us down therefore with those who bear witness of 
     And the Jews devised a stratagem against him;t but GOD devised a 
stratagem against them;u and GOD is the best deviser of stratagems.

	s  In Arabic, al Hawāriyūn; which word they derive from Hāra, to be 
white, and suppose the apostles were so called either from the candour and 
sincerity of their minds, or because they were princes and wore white 
garments, or else because they were by trade fullers.2  According to which 
last opinion, their vocation is thus related; that as Jesus passed by the 
seaside, he saw some fullers at work, and accosting them, said, Ye cleanse 
these clothes, but cleanse not your hearts; upon which they believed on him.  
But the true etymology seems to be from the Ethiopic verb Hawyra, to go; 
whence Hawārya signifies one that is sent, a messenger or apostle.3
	t  i.e., They laid a design to take away his life.
	u  This stratagem of God's was the taking of Jesus up into heaven, and 
stamping his likeness on another person, who was apprehended and crucified in 
his stead.  For it is the constant doctrine of the Mohammedans that it was not 
Jesus himself who underwent that ignominious death, but somebody else in his 
shape and resemblance.4  The person crucified some will have to be a spy that 
was sent to entrap him; others, that it was one Titian, who by the direction 
of Judas entered in at a window of the house where Jesus was, to kill him; and 
others that it was Judas himself, who agreed with the rulers of the Jews to 
betray him for thirty pieces of silver, and led those who were sent to take 
	They add, that Jesus after his crucifixion in effigy, was sent down 
again to the earth, to comfort his mother and disciples and acquaint them how 
the Jews were deceived; and was then taken up a second time into heaven.5
	It is supposed by several that this story was an original invention of 
Mohammed's; but they are certainly mistaken; for several sectaries held the 
same opinion, long before his time.  The Basilidians,6 in the very beginning 
of Christianity, denied that Christ himself suffered, but that Simon the 
Cyrenean was crucified in his place.  The Cerinthians before them, and the 
Carpocratians next (to name no more of those who affirmed Jesus to have been a 
mere man), did believe the same thing; that it was not himself, but one of his 
followers very like him that was crucified.  Photius tells us, that he read a 
book entitled, "The Journeys of the Apostles," relating the acts of Peter, 
John, Andrew, Thomas and Paul; and among other things contained therein, this 
was one, that Christ, was not crucified, but another in his stead, and that 
therefore he laughed at his crucifiers,7 or those who thought they had 
crucified him.8
	I have in another place9 mentioned an apocryphal gospel of Barnabas, a 
forgery originally of some nominal Christians, but interpolated since by 
Mohammedans; which gives this part of the history of Jesus with circumstances 
too curious to be omitted.  It is therein related, that the moment the Jews 
were going to apprehend Jesus in the garden, he was snatched up into the third 
heaven by the ministry of four angels, Gabriel, Michael, Raphael and Uriel; 
that he will not die till the end of the world, and that it was Judas who was 
crucified in his stead; God having permitted that traitor to appear so like 
his master, in the eyes of the Jews, that they took and delivered him to 
Pilate.  That this resemblance was so great, that it deceived the Virgin Mary 
and the Apostles themselves; but that Jesus Christ afterward obtained leave of 
God to go and comfort them.  That Barnabas having then asked him, why the 
divine goodness had suffered the mother and disciples of so holy a prophet to 
believe even for one moment that he had died in so ignominious a manner?  
Jesus returned the following answer.  "O Barnabas, believe me that every sin, 
how small soever, is punished by God with great torment, because God is 
offended with sin.  My mother therefore and faithful disciples, having loved 
me with a mixture of earthly love, the just God has been pleased to punish 
this love with their present grief, that they might not be punished for it 
hereafter in the flames of hell.  And as for me, though I have myself been 
blameless in the world, yet other men having called me God and the Son of God; 
therefore God, that I might not be mocked by the devils at the day of 
judgment, has been pleased that in this world I should be mocked by men with 
the death of Judas, making everybody believe that I died upon the cross.  And 
hence it is that this mocking is still to continue till the coming of 
Mohammed, the messenger of God; who, coming into the world, will undeceive 
every one who shall believe in the law of God from this mistake.1

	2  Idem.		3  Vide Ludolfi Lexic. Ęthiop. col. 40, et Golii notas 
ad cap. 61 Korāni, p. 205.		4  See Kor. c. 4.
5  Vide Marracc. in Alc. p. 113, &c., et in Prodr. part iii. p. 63, &c.	
	6  Irenęus, l. I, c. 23, &c.  Epiphan. Hęres. 24, num. iii.
7  Photius, Bibl. Cod. 114, col. 291.		8  Toland's Nararenus, p 17, 
&c.		9  Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.		1  See the Menagiana.  tom. 
iv. p. 326, &c.

     When GOD said, O Jesus, verily I will cause thee to die,x and I will take 
thee up unto me,y and I will deliver thee from the unbelievers; and I will 
place those who follow thee above the unbelievers, until the day of 
resurrection:z then unto me shall ye return, and I will judge between you of 
that concerning which ye disagree.
     Moreover, as for the infidels, I will punish them with a grievous 
punishment in this world, and in that which is to come; and there shall be 
none to help them.
50	But they who believe, and do that which is right, he shall give them 
their reward: for GOD loveth not the wicked doers.
     These signs and this prudent admonition do we rehearse unto thee.
     Verily the likeness of Jesus in the sight of GOD is as the likeness of 
Adam; he created him out of the dust, and then said unto him, Be; and he was.a
     This is the truth from thy LORD; be not therefore one of those who doubt;
     and whoever shall dispute with thee, concerning him,b after the knowledge 
which hath been given thee, say unto them, Come, let us call together our sons 
and your sons, and our wives and your wives, and ourselves and yourselves; 
then let us make imprecations, and lay the curse of GOD on those who lie.c
     Verily this is a true history: and there is no GOD, but GOD; and GOD is 
most mighty and wise.
     If they turn back, GOD well knoweth the evil doers.
     Say, O ye who have received the scripture, come to a just determination 
between us and you;d that we worship not any except GOD, and associate no 
creature with him; and that the one of us take not the other for lords,e 
beside GOD.  But if they turn back, say, Bear witness that we are true 

	x  It is the opinion of a great many Mohammedans that Jesus was taken up 
into heaven without dying; which opinion is consonant to what is delivered in 
the spurious gospel above mentioned.  Wherefore several of the commentators 
say that there is a hysteron proteron in these words, I will cause thee to 
die, and I will take thee up unto me; and that the copulative does not import 
order, or that he died before his assumption; the meaning being this, viz., 
that GOD would first take Jesus up to heaven, and deliver him from the 
infidels, and afterwards cause him to die; which they suppose is to happen 
when he shall return into the world again, before the last day.2  Some, 
thinking the order of the words is not to be changed, interpret them 
figuratively, and suppose their signification to be that Jesus was lifted up 
while he was asleep, or that GOD caused him to die a spiritual death to all 
worldly desires.  But others acknowledge that he actually died a natural 
death, and continued in that state three hours, or, according to another 
tradition, seven hours; after which he was restored to life, and then taken up 
to heaven.3
	y  Some Mohammedans say this was done by the ministry of Gabriel; but 
others that a strong whirlwind took him up from Mount Olivet.4
	z  That is, they who believe in Jesus (among whom the Mohammedans reckon 
themselves) shall be for ever superior to the Jews, both in arguments and in 
arms.  And accordingly, says al Beidāwi, to this very day the Jews have never 
prevailed either against the Christians or Moslems, nor have they any kingdom 
or established government of their own.
	a  He was like to Adam in respect of his miraculous production by the 
immediate power of GOD.1
	b  Namely, Jesus.
	c  To explain this passage their commentators tell the following story.  
That some Christians, with their bishop named Abu Hareth, coming to Mohammed 
as ambassadors from the inhabitants of Najrān, and entering into some disputes 
with him touching religion and the history of Jesus Christ, they agreed the 
next morning to abide the trial here mentioned, as a quick way of deciding 
which of them were in the wrong.  Mohammed met them accordingly, accompanied 
by his daughter Fātema, his son-in-law Ali, and his two grandsons, Hasan and 
Hosein, and desired them to wait till he had said his prayers.  But when they 
saw him kneel down, their resolution failed them, and they durst not venture 
to curse him, but submitted to pay him tribute.2
	d  That is, to such terms of agreement as are indisputably consonant to 
the doctrine of all the prophets and scriptures, and therefore cannot be 
reasonably rejected.3
	e  Besides other charges of idolatry on the Jews and Christians, 
Mohammed accused them of paying too implicit an obedience to their priests and 
monks, who took upon them to pronounce what things were lawful, and what 
unlawful, and to dispense with the laws of GOD.4

	2  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.		3  Al Beidāwi.		4  Al 
Thalabi.  See 2 Kings ii. I, II
1  Jallalo'ddin, &c		2  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.		3  Idem.	
	4  Idem.

     O ye to whom the scriptures have been given, why do ye dispute concerning 
Abraham,f since the Law and the Gospel were not sent down until after him?  Do 
ye not therefore understand?
     Behold ye are they who dispute concerning that which ye have some 
knowledge in; why therefore do you dispute concerning that which ye have no 
knowledge of?g  GOD knoweth, but ye know not.
60	Abraham was neither a Jew nor a Christian; but he was of the true 
religion, one resigned unto God, and was not of the number of the idolaters.
     Verily the men who are the nearest of kin unto Abraham are they who 
follow him; and this prophet, and they who believed on him: GOD is the patron 
of the faithful.
     Some of those who have received the scriptures desire to seduce you;h but 
they seduce themselves only, and they perceive it not.
     O ye who have received the scriptures, why do ye not believe in the signs 
of GOD, since ye are witnesses of them?
     O ye who have received the scriptures, why do you clothe truth with 
vanity, and knowingly hide the truth?i
     And some of those to whom the scriptures were given say, Believe in that 
which hath been sent down unto those who believe, in the beginning of the day, 
and deny it in the end thereof; that they may go back from their faith;k
     and believe him only who followeth your religion.  Say, Verily the true 
direction is the direction of GOD, that there may be given unto some other a 
revelation like unto what hath been given unto you.  Will they dispute with 
you before your Lord?  Say, Surely excellence is in the hand of GOD, he giveth 
it unto whom he pleaseth; GOD is bounteous and wise:
     he will confer peculiar mercy on whom he pleaseth; for GOD is endued with 
great beneficence.

	f  viz., By pretending him to have been of your religion.
	g  i.e., Ye perversely dispute even concerning those things which ye 
find in the law and the gospel, whereby it appears they were both sent down 
long after Abraham's time; why then will ye offer to dispute concerning such 
points of Abraham's religion, of which your scriptures say nothing, and of 
which ye consequently can have no knowledge?5
	h  This passage was revealed when the Jews endeavoured to pervert 
Hodheifa, Ammār, and Moādh to their religion.1
	i  The Jews and Christians are again accused of corrupting the 
scriptures and stifling the prophecies concerning Mohammed.
	k  The commentators, to explain this passage, say that Caab Ebn al 
Ashraf and Malec Ebn al Seif (two Jews of Medina) advised their companions, 
when the Keblah was changed,2 to make as if they believed it was done by the 
divine direction, and to pray towards the Caaba in the morning, but that in 
the evening they should pray, as formerly, towards the temple of Jerusalem; 
that Mohammed's followers, imagining the Jews were better judges of this 
matter than themselves, might imitate their example.  But others say these 
were certain Jewish priests of Khaibar, who directed some of their people to 
pretend in the morning that they had embraced Mohammedism, but in the close of 
the day to say that they had looked into their books of scripture, and 
consulted their Rabbins, and could not find that Mohammed was the person 
described and intended in the law, by which trick they hoped to raise doubts 
in the minds of the Mohammedans.3

	Al Beidāwi.		1  Idem.		2  See before, c. 2, p. 16.	
	3  Al Beidāwi

     There is of those who have received the scriptures, unto whom if thou 
trust a talent he will restore it unto thee;l and there is also of them, unto 
whom if thou trust a dinār, he will not restore it unto thee, unless thou 
stand over him continually with great urgency.m
     This they do because they say, We are not obliged to observe justice with 
the heathen: but they utter a lie against GOD, knowingly.
70	Yea, whoso keepeth his covenant, and feareth God, GOD surely loveth 
those who fear him.
     But they who make merchandise of GOD'S covenant, and of their oaths, for 
a small price, shall have no portion in the next life, neither shall GOD speak 
to them or regard them on the day of resurrection, nor shall he cleanse them; 
but they shall suffer a grievous punishment.
     And there are certainly some of them who read the scriptures perversely, 
that ye may think what they read to be really in the scriptures, yet it is not 
in the scripture; and they say, This is from GOD; but it is not from GOD: and 
they speak that which is false concerning GOD, against their own knowledge.
     It is not fit for a man, that GOD should give him a book of revelations, 
and wisdom, and prophecy; and then he should say unto men, Be ye worshippers 
of me, besides GOD; but he ought to say, Be ye perfect in knowledge and in 
works, since ye know the scriptures, and exercise yourselves therein.n
     GOD hath not commanded you to take the angels and the prophets for your 
lords: Will he command you to become infidels, after ye have been true 
     And remember when GOD accepted the covenant of the prophets,o saying, 
This verily is the scripture and the wisdom which I have given you: hereafter 
shall an apostle come unto you, confirming the truth of that scripture which 
is with you; ye shall surely believe in him, and ye shall assist him.  GOD 
said, Are ye firmly resolved, and do ye accept my covenant on this condition?  
They answered, We are firmly resolved: God said, Be ye therefore witnesses; 
and I also bear witness with you:
     and whosoever turneth back after this, they are surely the transgressors.
     Do they therefore seek any other religion but GOD'S? since to him is 
resigned whosoever is in heaven or on earth, voluntarily or of force: and to 
him shall they return.

	l  As an instance of this, the commentators bring Abd'allah Ebn Salām, a 
Jew, very intimate with Mohammed,4 to whom one of the Koreish lent 1,200 
ounces of gold, which he very punctually repaid at the time appointed.5
	m  Al Beidāwi produces an example of such a piece of injustice in one 
Phineas Ebn Azūra, a Jew, who borrowed a dinār, which is a gold coin worth 
about ten shillings, of a Koreishite, and afterwards had the conscience to 
deny it.
	But the person more directly struck at in this passage was the above-
mentioned Caab Ebn al Ashraf, a most inveterate enemy of Mohammed and his 
religion, of whom Jallalo'ddin relates the same story as al Beidāwi does of 
Phineas.  This Caab, after the battle of Bedr, went to Mecca, and there, to 
excite the Koreish to revenge themselves, made and recited verses lamenting 
the death of those who were slain in that battle, and reflecting very severely 
on Mohammed; and he afterwards returned to Medina, and had the boldness to 
repeat them publicly there also, at which Mohammed was so exceedingly provoked 
that he proscribed him, and sent a party of men to kill him, and he was 
circumvented and slain by Mohammed Ebn Moslema, in the third year of the 
Hejra.1  Dr. Prideaux2 has confounded the Caab we are now speaking of with 
another very different person of the same name, and a famous poet, but who was 
the son of Zohair, and no Jew, as a learned gentleman has already observed.3  
In consequence of which mistake, the doctor attributes what the Arabian 
historians write of the latter to the former, and wrongly affirms that he was 
not put to death by Mohammed.
	Some of the commentators, however, suppose that in the former part of 
this passage the Christians are intended, who, they say, are generally people 
of some honour and justice; and in the latter part the Jews, who, they think, 
are more given to cheating and dishonesty.4
	n  This passage was revealed, say the commentators, in answer to the 
Christians, who insisted that Jesus had commanded them to worship him as GOD.  
Al Beidāwi adds that two Christians, named Abu Rāfé al Koradhi and al Seyid al 
Najrāni, offered to acknowledge Mohammed for their Lord, and to worship him; 
to which he answered, GOD forbid that we should worship any besides GOD.
	o  Some commentators interpret this of the children of Israel 
themselves, of whose race the prophets were.  But others say the souls of all 
the prophets, even of those who were not then born, were present on Mount 
Sinai when GOD gave the law to Moses, and that they entered into the covenant 
here mentioned with him.  A story borrowed by Mohammed from the Talmudists, 
and therefore most probably his true meaning in this place.

	4  See Prideaux's Life of Mahom. p. 33.		5  Al Beidāwi, 
Jallalo'ddin.		1  Al Jannābi, Elmacin.	
2  Life of  Mahom. p. 78, &c.		3  Vide Gagnier, in not. ad Abulfed. Vit. 
Moh. p. 64 and 122.		4  Al Beidāwi.

     Say, We believe in GOD, and that which hath been sent down unto us, and 
that which was sent down unto Abraham, and Ismael, and Isaac, and Jacob, and 
the tribes, and that which was delivered to Moses, and Jesus, and the prophets 
from their LORD; we make no distinction between any of them; and to him are we 
     Whoever followeth any other religion than Islam, it shall not be accepted 
of him: and in the next life he shall be of those who perish.p
80	How shall GOD direct men who have become infidels after they had 
believed, and borne witness that the apostle was true, and manifest 
declarations of the divine will had come unto them? for GOD directeth not the 
ungodly people.
     Their reward shall be, that on them shall fall the curse of GOD and of 
angels, and of all mankind:
     they shall remain under the same forever; their torment shall not be 
mitigated, neither shall they be regarded;
     except those who repent after this, and amend; for GOD is gracious and 
     Moreover they who become infidels after they have believed, and yet 
increase in infidelity, their repentance shall in no wise be accepted, and 
they are those who go astray.
     Verily they who believe not, and die in their unbelief, the world full of 
gold shall in nowise be accepted from any of them, even though he should give 
it for his ransom; they shall suffer a grievous punishment, and they shall 
have none to help them.
     Ye will never attain unto righteousness until ye give in alms of that 
which ye love: and whatever ye give, GOD knoweth it.
     All food was permitted unto the children of Israel, except what Israel 
forbade unto himself,q before the Pentateuch was sent down.r  Say unto the 
Jews, Bring hither the Pentateuch and read it, if ye speak truth.
     Whoever therefore contriveth a lie against GOD after this, they will be 
evil doers.
     Say, GOD is true: follow ye therefore the religion of Abraham the 
orthodox; for he was no idolater.
90	Verily the first house appointed unto men to worship in was that which 
was in Becca;s blessed, and a direction to all creatures.t

	p  See before, chapter 2, p. 8, note y.
	q  This passage was revealed on the Jews reproaching Mohammed and his 
followers with their eating of the flesh and milk of camels,1 which they said 
was forbidden Abraham, whose religion Mohammed pretended to follow.  In answer 
to which he tells them that GOD ordained no distinction of meats before he 
gave the law to Moses, though Jacob voluntarily abstained from the flesh and 
milk of camels; which some commentators say was the consequence of a vow made 
by that patriarch, when afflicted with the sciatica, that if he were cured he 
would eat no more of that meat which he liked best; and that was camel's 
flesh: but others suppose he abstained from it by the advice of physicians 
	This exposition seems to be taken from the children of Israel's not 
eating of the sinew on the hollow of the thigh, because the angel, with whom 
Jacob wrestled at Peniel, touched the hollow of his thigh in the sinew that 
	r  Wherein the Israelites, because of their wickedness and perverseness, 
were forbidden to eat certain animals which had been allowed their 
	s  Mohammed received this passage when the Jews said that their Keblah, 
or the temple of Jerusalem, was more ancient than that of the Mohammedans, or 
the Caaba.5  Becca is another name of Mecca.6  Al Beidāwi observes that the 
Arabs used the "M" and "B" promiscuously in several words.
	t  i.e., The Keblah, towards which they are to turn their faces in 

	1  See Levit. xi. 4; Deut. xiv. 7.		2  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.	
	3  Gen. xxxii. 32.		4  Kor. c. 4.  See the notes there.	
	5  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.		6  See the Prelim. Disc Sect. I. p. 

     Therein are manifest signs:u the place where Abraham stood; and whoever 
entereth therein, shall be safe.  And it is a duty towards GOD, incumbent on 
those who are able to go thither,x to visit this house;
     but whosoever disbelieveth, verily GOD needeth not the service of any 
     Say, O ye who have received the scriptures, why do ye not believe in the 
signs of GOD?
     Say, O ye who have received the scriptures, why do ye keep back from the 
way of GOD, him who believeth?  Ye seek to make it crooked, and yet are 
witnesses that it is the right: but GOD will not be unmindful of what ye do.
     O true believers, if ye obey some of those who have received the 
scripture, they will render you infidels, after ye have believed:y
     and how can ye be infidels, when the signs of GOD are read unto you, and 
his apostle is among you?  But he who cleaveth firmly unto GOD, is already 
directed in the right way.
     O believers, fear GOD with his true fear, and die not unless ye also be 
true believers.
     And cleave all of you unto the covenantz of GOD, and depart not from it, 
and remember the favor of GOD towards you: since ye were enemies, and he 
reconciled your hearts, and ye became companions and brethren by his favor:
     and ye were on the brink of a pit of fire, and he delivered you thence.  
Thus GOD declareth unto you his signs, that ye may be directed.
100	Let there be people among you who invite to the best religion; and 
command that which is just, and forbid that which is evil; and they shall be 
     And be not as they who are divided, and disagree in matters of religion,a 
after manifest proofs have been brought unto them: they shall suffer a great 
     On the day of resurrection some faces shall become white, and other faces 
shall become black.b  And unto them whose faces shall become black, GOD will 
say, Have ye returned unto your unbelief, after ye had believed? therefore 
taste the punishment, for that ye have been unbelievers:
     but they whose faces shall become white shall be in the mercy of GOD, 
therein shall they remain for ever.

	u  Such is the stone wherein they show the print of Abraham's feet, and 
the inviolable security of the place immediately mentioned; that the birds 
light not on the roof of the Caaba, and wild beasts put off their fierceness 
there; that none who came against it in a hostile manner ever prospered,1 as 
appeared particularly in the unfortunate expedition of Abraha al Ashram;2 and 
other fables of the same stamp which the Mohammedans are taught to believe.
	x  According to an exposition of this passage attributed to Mohammed, he 
is supposed to be able to perform the pilgrimage, who can supply himself with 
provisions for the journey, and a beast to ride upon.  Al Shāfeļ has decided 
that those who have money enough, if they cannot go themselves, must hire some 
other to go in their room.  Malec Ebn Ans thinks he is to be reckoned able who 
is strong and healthy, and can bear the fatigue of the journey on foot, if he 
has no beast to ride, and can also earn his living by the way.  But Abu Hanīfa 
is of opinion that both money sufficient and health of body are requisite to 
make the pilgrimage a duty.3
	y  This passage was revealed on occasion of a quarrel excited between 
the tribes of al Aws and al Khazraj, by one Shās Ebn Kais, a Jew; who, passing 
by some of both tribes as they were sitting and discoursing familiarly 
together, and being inwardly vexed at the friendship and harmony which reigned 
among them on their embracing Mohammedism, whereas they had been, for 120 
years before, most inveterate and mortal enemies, though descendants of two 
brothers; in order to set them at variance, sent a young man to sit down by 
them, directing him to relate the story of the battle of Boāth (a place near 
Medina), wherein, after a bloody fight, al Aws had the better of al Khazraj, 
and to repeat some verses on that subject.  The young man executed his orders; 
whereupon those of each tribe began to magnify themselves, and to reflect on 
and irritate the other, till at length they called to arms, and great numbers 
getting together on each side, a dangerous battle had ensued, if Mohammed had 
not stepped in and reconciled them; by representing to them how much they 
would be to blame if they returned to paganism, and revived those animosities 
which Islām had composed; and telling them that what had happened was a trick 
of the devil to disturb their present tranquility.4
	z  Literally, Hold fast by the cord of God.  That is, Secure yourselves 
by adhering to Islām, which is here metaphorically expressed by a cord, 
because it is as sure a means of saving those who profess it from perishing 
hereafter, as holding by a rope is to prevent one's falling into a well, or 
other like place.  It is said that Mohammed used for the same reason to call 
the Korān, Habl Allah al matīn, i.e., the sure cord of GOD.5
	a  i.e., As the Jews and Christians, who dispute concerning the unity of 
GOD, the future state, &c.1
	b  See the Preliminary Discourse, Sect. IV.

	1  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.		2  See Kor. c. 105.		3  Al 
Beidāwi.		4  Idem.
5  Idem.		1  Idem

     These are the signs of GOD: we recite them unto thee with truth.  GOD 
will not deal unjustly with his creatures.
     And to GOD belongeth whatever is in heaven and on earth; and to GOD shall 
all things return.
     Ye are the best nation that hath been raised up unto mankind: ye command 
that which is just, and ye forbid that which is unjust, and ye believe in GOD.  
And if they who have received the scriptures had believed, it had surely been 
the better for them: there are believers among them,c but the greater part of 
them are transgressors.
     They shall not hurt you, unless with a slight hurt; and if they fight 
against you, they shall turn their backs to you; and they shall not be 
     They are smitten with vileness wheresoever they are found; unless they 
obtain security by entering into a treaty with GOD, and a treaty with men:f 
and they draw on themselves indignation from GOD, and they are afflicted with 
poverty.  This they suffer, because they disbelieved the signs of GOD,g and 
slew the prophets unjustly; this, because they were rebellious, and 
     Yet they are not all alike: there are of those who have received the 
scriptures, upright people; they meditate on the signs of GOD in the night 
season, and worship;
110	they believe in GOD, and the last day; and command that which is just, 
and forbid that which is unjust, and zealously strive to excel in good works; 
these are of the righteous.
     And ye shall not be denied the reward of the good which ye do;h for GOD 
knoweth the pious.
     As for the unbelievers, their wealth shall not profit them at all, 
neither their children, against GOD: they shall be the companions of hell 
fire; they shall continue therein forever.
     The likeness of that which they lay out in this present life, is as a 
wind wherein there is a scorching cold: it falleth on the standing corn of 
those men who have injured their own souls, and destroyeth it.  And GOD 
dealeth not unjustly with them; but they injure their own souls.
     O true believers, contract not an intimate friendship with any besides 
yourselves;i they will not fail to corrupt you.  They wish for that which may 
cause you to perish: their hatred hath already appeared from out of their 
mouths; but what their breasts conceal is yet more inveterate.  We have 
already shown you signs of their ill will towards you, if ye understand.
     Behold, ye love them, and they do not love you: ye believe in all the 
scriptures, and when they meet you, they say, We believe; but when they 
assemble privately together, they bite their fingers' ends out of wrath 
against you.  Say unto them, Die in your wrath: verily GOD knoweth the 
innermost part of your breasts.
     If good happen unto you, it grieveth them; and if evil befall you, they 
rejoice at it.  But if ye be patient, and fear God, their subtlety shall not 
hurt you at all; for GOD comprehendeth whatever they do.

	c  As Abd'allah Ebn Salām and his companions,2 and those of the tribes 
of al Aws and al Khazraj who had embraced Mohammedism.
	d  This verse, al Beidāwi says, is one of those whose meaning is 
mysterious, and relates to something future: intimating the low condition to 
which the Jewish tribes of Koreidha, Nadīr, Banu Kainokā, and those who dwelt 
at Khaibar, were afterwards reduced by Mohammed.
	e  i.e., Unless they either profess the Mohammedan religion, or submit 
to pay tribute.
	f  Those namely who have embraced Islām.
	g  That is, the Korān.
	h  Some copies have a different reading in this passage, which they 
express in the third person: They shall not be denied, &c.
	i  i.e., Of a different religion.

						2 Al Beidāwi.

     Call to mind when thou wentest forth early from thy family, that thou 
mightest prepare the faithful a camp for war;k and GOD hear and knew it;
     when two companies of you were anxiously thoughtful, so that ye became 
faint-hearted;l but GOD was the supporter of them both; and in GOD let the 
faithful trust.
     And GOD had already given you the victory at Bedr,m when ye were inferior 
in number; therefore fear GOD, that ye may be thankful.
120	When thou saidst unto the faithful, Is it not enough for you, that your 
LORD should assist you with three thousand angels sent down from heaven?
     Verily if ye persevere, and fear God, and your enemies come upon you 
suddenly, your LORD will assist you with five thousand angels, distinguished 
by their horses and attire.n
     And this GOD designed only as good tidings for youo that your hearts 
might rest secure; for victory is from GOD alone, the mighty, the wise.  That 
he should cut off the uttermost part of the unbelievers, or cast them down, or 
that they should be overthrown and unsuccessful is nothing to thee.
     It is no business of thine; whether God be turned unto them, or whether 
he punish them; they are surely unjust doers.p
     To GOD belongeth whatsoever is in heaven and on earth: he spareth whom he 
pleaseth, and he punisheth whom he pleaseth; for GOD is merciful.
     O true believers, devour nor usury, doubling it twofold; but fear GOD, 
that ye may prosper:
     and fear the fire which is prepared for the unbelievers; and obey GOD, 
and his apostle that ye may obtain mercy.
     And run with emulation to obtain remission from your LORD, and paradise, 
whose breath equalleth the heavens and the earth, which is prepared for the 

	k  This was at the battle of Ohod, a mountain about four miles to the 
north of Medina.  The Koreish, to revenge their loss at Bedr,1 the next year 
being the third of the Hejra, got together an army of 3,000 men, among whom 
there were 200 horse, and 700 armed with coats of mail.  These forces marched 
under the conduct of Abu Sofiān and sat down at Dhu'lholeifa, a village about 
six miles from Medina.  Mohammed, being much inferior to his enemies in 
numbers, at first determined to keep himself within the town, and receive them 
there; but afterwards, the advice of some of his companions prevailing, he 
marched out against them at the head of 1,000 men (some say he had 1,050 men, 
others but 900), of whom 100 were armed with coats of mail, but he had no more 
than one horse, besides his own, in his whole army.  With these forces he 
formed a camp in a village near Ohod, which mountain he contrived to have on 
his back; and the better to secure his men from being surrounded, he placed 
fifty archers in the rear, with strict orders not to quit their post.  When 
they came to engage, Mohammed had the better at first, but afterwards by the 
fault of his archers, who left their ranks for the sake of the plunder, and 
suffered the enemies' horse to encompass the Mohammedans and attack them in 
the rear, he lost the day, and was very near losing his life, being struck 
down by a shower of stones, and wounded in the face with two arrows, on 
pulling out of which his two foreteeth dropped out.  Of the Moslems seventy 
men were slain, and among them Hamza the uncle of Mohammed, and of the 
infidels twenty-two.2  To excuse the ill success of this battle, and to raise 
the drooping courage of his followers, is Mohammed's drift in the remaining 
part of this chapter.
	l  These were some of the families of Banu Salma of the tribe of al 
Khazraj, and Banu'l Hareth of the tribe of al Aws, who composed the two wings 
of Mohammed's army.  Some ill impression had been made on them by Abda'llah 
Ebn Obba Solūl, then an infidel, who having drawn off 300 men, told them that 
they were going to certain death, and advised them to return back with him; 
but he could prevail on but a few, the others being kept firm by the divine 
influence, as the following words intimate.3
	m  See before, p. 32.
	n  The angels who assisted the Mohammedans at Bedr, rode, say the 
commentators, on black and white horses, and had on their heads white and 
yellow sashes, the ends of which hung down between their shoulders.
	o  i.e., As an earnest of future success.
	p  This passage was revealed when Mohammed received the wounds above 
mentioned at the battle of Ohod, and cried out, How shall that people prosper 
who have stained their prophet's face with blood, while he called them to 
their Lord?  The person who wounded him was Otha the son of Abu Wakkas.4

	1  See before, p. 32.		2  Abulfeda, in Vita Moham. p. 64, &c.  El 
Macin. l. x.  Prideaux's Life of Mahomet, p. 80.
3  Al Beidāwi.

     who give alms in prosperity and adversity; who bridle their anger, and 
forgive men; for GOD loveth the beneficent.q
     And who, after they have committed a crime, or dealt unjustly with their 
own souls, remember GOD, and ask pardon for their sins, (for who forgiveth 
sins except GOD?) and persevere not in what they have done knowingly;
130	their reward shall be pardon from their LORD, and gardens wherein rivers 
flow, they shall remain therein forever: and how excellent is the reward of 
those who labor!
     There have already been before you examples of punishment of infidels, 
therefore go through the earth, and behold what hath been the end of those who 
accuse God's apostles of imposture.
     This book is a declaration unto men, and a direction and an admonition to 
the pious.
     And be not dismayed, neither be ye grieved; for ye shall be superior to 
the unbelievers if ye believe.
     If a wound hath happened unto you in war,r a like wound hath already 
happened unto the unbelieving people:s and we cause these days of different 
success interchangeably to succeed each other among men; that GOD may know 
those who believe, and may have martyrs from among you: (GOD loveth not the 
workers of iniquity;)
     and that GOD might prove those who believe, and destroy the infidels.
     Did ye imagine that ye should enter paradise, when as yet GOD knew not 
those among you who fought strenuously in his cause; nor knew those who 
persevered with patience?
     Moreover ye did sometimes wish for death before that ye met it;t but ye 
have now seen it, and ye looked on, but retreated from it.
     Mohammed is no more than an apostle; the other apostles have already 
deceased before him: if he die, therefore, or be slain, will ye turn back on 
your heels?u but he who turneth back on his heels will not hurt God at all; 
and GOD will surely reward the thankful.

	q  It is related of Hasan the son of Ali, that a slave having once 
thrown a dish on him boiling hot, as he sat at table, and fearing his master's 
resentment, fell immediately on his knees, and repeated these words, Paradise 
is for those who bridle their anger: Hasan answered, I am not angry.  The 
slave proceeded, and for those who forgive men.  I forgive you, said Hasan.  
The slave, however, finished the verse, adding, for God loveth the beneficent.  
Since it is so replied Hasan, I give you your liberty, and four hundred pieces 
of silver.5  A noble instance of moderation and generosity.
	r  That is, by your being worsted at Ohod.
	s  When they were defeated at Bedr.  It is observable that the number of 
Mohammedans slain at Ohod, was equal to that of the idolaters slain at Bedr; 
which was so ordered by GOD for a reason to be given elsewhere.1
	t  Several of Mohammed's followers who were not present at Bedr, wished 
for an opportunity of obtaining, in another action, the like honour as those 
had gained who fell martyrs in that battle; yet were discouraged on seeing the 
superior numbers of the idolaters in the expedition of Ohod.  On which 
occasion this passage was revealed.2
	u  These words were revealed when it was reported in the battle of Ohod 
that Mohammed was slain; whereupon the idolaters cried out to his followers, 
Since your prophet is slain, return to your ancient religion, and to your 
friends; if Mohammed had been a prophet he had not been slain.  It is related 
that a Moslem named Ans Ebn al Nadar, uncle to Malec Ebn Ans, hearing these 
words, said aloud to his companions, My friends, though Mohammed be slain, 
certainly Mohammed's Lord liveth and dieth not; therefore value not your lives 
since the prophet is dead, but fight for the cause for which he fought: then 
he cried out, O God, I am excused before thee, and acquitted in thy sight of 
what they say; and drawing his sword, fought valiantly till he was killed.3

	4  Idem.  Abulfeda, ubi supra.		5  Vide D'Herbelot, Bibl. 
Orient. Art. Hassan.		1  In not. ad cap. 8.
2  Al Beidāwi		3  Idem.

     No soul can die unless by the permission of GOD, according to what is 
written in the book containing the determination of things.x  And whoso 
chooseth the reward of this world, we will give him thereof: but whoso 
chooseth the reward of the world to come, we will give him thereof: and we 
will surely reward the thankful.
140	How many prophets have encountered those who had many myriads of troops: 
and yet they desponded not in their mind for what had befallen them in 
fighting for the religion of GOD; and were not weakened, neither behaved 
themselves in an abject manner?  GOD loveth those who persevere patiently.
     And their speech was no other than what they said, Our LORD forgive us 
our offences, and our transgressions in our business; and confirm our feet, 
and help us against the unbelieving people.  And GOD gave them the reward of 
this world, and a glorious reward in the life to come; for GOD loveth the 
     O ye who believe, if you obey the infidels, they will cause you to turn 
back on your heels, and ye will be turned back and perish:y
     but GOD is your LORD; and he is the best helper.
     We will surely cast a dread into the hearts of the unbelievers,z because 
they have associated with GOD that concerning which he sent them down no 
power: their dwelling shall be the fire of hell; and the receptacle of the 
wicked shall be miserable.
     GOD had already made good unto you his promise, when ye destroyed them by 
his permission,a until ye became faint-hearted, and disputed concerning the 
command of the apostle, and were rebellious;b after God had shown you what ye 
     Some of you chose this present world, and others of you chose the world 
to come.c  Then he turned you to flight from before them, that he might make 
trial of you: (but he hath now pardoned you: for GOD is endued with 
beneficence towards the faithful;)
     when ye went up as ye fled, and looked not back on any: while the apostle 
called you, in the uttermost part of you.d  Therefore God rewarded you with 
affliction on affliction, that ye be not grieved hereafter for the spoils 
which ye fail of, nor for that which befalleth you,e for GOD is well 
acquainted with whatever ye do.

	x  Mohammed, the more effectually to still the murmurs of his party on 
their defeat, represents to them that the time of every man's death is decreed 
and predetermined by God, and that those who fell in the battle could not have 
avoided their fate had they stayed at home; whereas they had now obtained the 
glorious advantage of dying martyrs for the faith.  Of the Mohammedan doctrine 
of absolute predestination I have spoken in another place.4
	y  This passage was also occasioned by the endeavours of the Koreish to 
seduce the Mohammedans to their old idolatry, as they fled in the battle of 
	z  To this Mohammed attributed the sudden retreat of Abu Sofiān and his 
troops, without making any farther advantage of their success; only giving 
Mohammed a challenge to meet them next year at Bedr, which he accepted.  
Others say that as they were on their march home, they repented they had not 
utterly extirpated the Mohammedans, and began to think of going back to Medina 
for that purpose, but were prevented by a sudden consternation or panic fear, 
which fell on them from GOD.5
	a  i.e., In the beginning of the battle, when the Moslems had the 
advantage, putting the idolaters to flight, and killing several of them.
	b  That is, till the bowmen, who were placed behind to prevent their 
being surrounded, seeing the enemy fly, quitted their post, contrary to 
Mohammed's express orders, and dispersed themselves to seize the plunder; 
whereupon Khāled Ebn al Walīd perceiving their disorder, fell on their rear 
with the horse which he commanded, and turned the fortune of the day.  It is 
related that though Abda'llah Ebn Johair, their captain, did all he could to 
make them keep their ranks, he had not ten that stayed with him out of the 
whole fifty.6
	c  The former were they who, tempted by the spoil, quitted their post; 
and the latter they who stood firm by their leader.
	d  Crying aloud, Come hither to me, O servants of GOD!  I am the apostle 
of GOD; he who returneth back, shall enter paradise.  But notwithstanding all 
his endeavours to rally his men, he could not get above thirty of them about 
	e  i.e., GOD punished your avarice and disobedience by suffering you to 
be beaten by your enemies, and to be discouraged by the report of your 
prophet's death; that ye might be inured to patience under adverse fortune, 
and not repine at any loss or disappointment for the future

	4  Prelim. Disc. Sect IV.		5  Al Beidāwi.		6  Idem.  
Vide Abulfeda, Vit. Moh. p. 65, 66, and note, ibid.

     Then he sent down upon you after affliction security; a soft sleep which 
fell on some part of you; but other part were troubled by their own souls;f 
falsely thinking of GOD, a foolish imagination saying, Will anything of the 
matter happen unto us?g  Say, Verily, the matter belongeth wholly unto GOD.  
They concealed in their minds what they declared not unto thee; saying,h If 
anything of the matter had happened unto us,i we had not been slain here.  
Answer, If ye had been in your houses, verily they would have gone forth to 
fight, whose slaughter was decreed, to the places where they died, and this 
came to pass that GOD might try what was in your breasts, and might discern 
what was in your hearts; for GOD knoweth the innermost parts of the breasts of 
     Verily they among you who turned their backs on the day whereon the two 
armies met each other at Ohod, Satan caused them to slip for some crime which 
they had committed:k but now hath GOD forgiven them; for GOD is gracious and 
150	O true believers, be not as they who believed not, and said of their 
brethren when they had journeyed in the land or had been at war, If they had 
been with us, those had not died, nor had these been slain: whereas what 
befell them was so ordained that GOD might take it matter of sighing in their 
hearts.  GOD giveth life, and causeth to die: and GOD seeth that which ye do.
     Moreover if ye be slain, or die in defence of the religion of GOD, verily 
pardon from GOD, and mercy, is better than what they heap together of worldly 
     And if ye die, or be slain, verily unto GOD shall ye be gathered.
     And as to the mercy granted unto the disobedient from GOD, thou O 
Mohammed, hast been mild towards them; but if thou hadst been severe, and 
hard-hearted, they had surely separated themselves from about thee.  Therefore 
forgive them, and ask pardon for them: and consult them in the affair of war; 
and after thou hast deliberated, trust in GOD; for GOD loveth those who trust 
in him.
     If GOD help you, none shall conquer you; but if he desert you, who is it 
that will help you after him?  Therefore in GOD let the faithful trust.
     It is not the part of a  prophet to defraud,l for he who defraudeth shall 
bring with him what he hath defrauded any one of, on the day of the 
resurrection.m  Then shall every soul be paid what he hath gained; and they 
shall not be treated unjustly.

	f  After the action, those who had stood firm in the battle were 
refreshed as they lay in the field by falling into an agreeable sleep, so that 
the swords fell out of their hands; but those who had behaved themselves ill 
were troubled in their minds, imagining they were now given over to 
	g  That is, is there any appearance of success, or of the divine favour 
and assistance which we have been promised?2
	h  i.e., To themselves, or to one another in private.
	i  If GOD had assisted us according to his promise; or, as others 
interpret the words, if we had taken the advice of Abda'llah Ebn Obba Solūl, 
and had kept within the town of Medina, our companions had not lost their 
	k  viz., For their covetousness in quitting their post to seize the 
	l  This passage was revealed, as some say, on the division of the spoil 
at Bedr; when some of the soldiers suspected Mohammed of having privately 
taken a scarlet carpet made all of silk and very rich, which was missing.4  
Others suppose the archers, who occasioned the loss of the battle of Ohod, 
left their station because they imagined Mohammed would not give them their 
share of the plunder; because, as it is related, he once sent out a party as 
an advanced guard, and in the meantime attacking the enemy, took some spoils 
which he divided among those who were with him in the action, and gave nothing 
to the party that was absent on duty.5
	m  According to a tradition of Mohammed, whoever cheateth another will 
on the day of judgment carry his fraudulent purchase publicly on his neck.

	1  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.	
	4  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.
5  Al Beidāwi.

     Shall he therefore who followeth that which is well-pleasing unto GOD be 
as he who bringeth on himself wrath from GOD, and whose receptacle is hell? an 
evil journey shall it be thither.
     There shall be degrees of rewards and punishments with GOD, for GOD seeth 
what they do.
     Now hath GOD been gracious unto the believers when he raised up among 
them an apostle of their own nation,n who should recite his signs unto them, 
and purify them, and teach them the book of the Koran and wisdom:o whereas 
they were before in manifest error.
     After a misfortune had befallen you at Ohod, (ye had already obtained two 
equal advantages)p do ye say, Whence cometh this?  Answer, This is from 
yourselves:q for GOD is almighty.
160	And what happened unto you, on the day whereon the two armies met, was 
certainly by the permission of GOD; and that he might know the ungodly.  It 
was said unto them, Come, fight for the religion of GOD, or drive back the 
enemy: they answered, if we had known ye went out to fight, we had certainly 
followed you.r  They were on that day nearer unto unbelief, than they were to 
     they spake with their mouths, what was not in their hearts: but GOD 
perfectly knew what they concealed;
     who said of their brethren, while themselves stayed at home, if they had 
obeyed us, they had not been slain.  Say, Then keep back death from 
yourselves, if ye say truth.
     Thou shalt in nowise reckon those who have been slain at Ohod, in the 
cause of GOD, dead; nay, they are sustained alive with their LORD,s
     rejoicing for what GOD of his favor hath granted them; and being glad for 
those who, coming after them, have not as yet overtaken them;t because there 
shall no fear come on them, neither shall they be grieved.
     They are filled with joy for the favor which they have received from GOD 
and his bounty; and for that GOD suffereth not the reward of the faithful to 
     They who hearkened unto GOD and his apostle, after a wound had befallen 
them at Ohod,u such of them as do good works, and fear God, shall have a great 

	n  Some copies, instead of min anfosihim, i.e., of themselves, read min 
anfasihim, i.e., of the noblest among them; for such was the tribe of Koreish, 
of which Mohammed was descended.1
	o  i.e., The Sonna.2
	p  viz., In the battle of Bedr, where ye slew seventy of the enemy, 
equalling the number of those who lost their lives at Ohod, and also took as 
many prisoners.3
	q  It was the consequence of your disobeying the orders of the prophet, 
and abandoning your post for the sake of plunder.
	r  That is, if we had conceived the least hope of success when ye 
marched out of Medina to encounter the infidels, and had not known that ye 
went rather to certain destruction than to battle, we had gone with you.  But 
this Mohammed here tells them was only a feigned excuse; the true reason of 
their staying behind being their want of faith and firmness in their 
	s  See before, p. 17.
	t  i.e., Rejoicing also for their sakes, who are destined to suffer 
martyrdom, but have not as yet attained it.5
	u  The commentators differ a little as to the occassion of this passage.  
When news was brought to Mohammed, after the battle of Ohod, that the enemy, 
repenting of their retreat, were returning towards Medina, he called about him 
those who had stood by him in the battle, and marched out to meet the enemy as 
far as Homarā al Asad, about eight miles from that town, notwithstanding 
several of his men were so ill of their wounds that they were forced to be 
carried; but a panic fear having seized the army of the Koreish, they changed 
their resolution and continued their march home; of which Mohammed having 
received intelligence, he also went back to Medina: and, according to some 
commentators, the Korān here approves the faith and courage of those who 
attended the prophet on this occasion.  Others say the persons intended in 
this passage were those who went with Mohammed the next year, to meet Abu 
Sofiān and the Koreish, according to their challenge, at Bedr,1 where they 
waited some time for the enemy, and then returned home; for the Koreish, 
though they set out from Mecca, yet never came so far as the place of 
appointment, their hearts failing them on their march; which Mohammed 
attributed to their being struck with a terror from GOD.2  This expedition the 
Arabian histories call the second, or lesser expedition of Bedr.

	1  Idem.		2  Idem.		3  See before, p. 32.		4  Al 
Beidāwi.		5  Vide Rev. vi. II.
1  See before, p. 47, note 2.		2  Al Beidāwi.

     unto whom certain men said, Verily the men of Mecca have already gathered 
forces against you, be ye therefore afraid of them:x but this increased their 
faith, and they said, GOD is our support, and the most excellent patron.
     Wherefore they returned with favor from GOD, and advantage:y no evil 
befell them: and they followed what was well pleasing unto GOD: for GOD is 
endowed with great liberality.
     Verily that devilz would cause you to fear his friends: but be ye not 
afraid of them: but fear me, if ye be true believers.
170	They shall not grieve thee, who emulously hasten unto infidelity; for 
they shall never hurt GOD at all.  GOD will not give them a part in the next 
life, and they shall suffer a great punishment.
     Surely those who purchase infidelity with faith shall by no means hurt 
GOD at all, but they shall suffer a grievous punishment.
     And let not the unbelievers think, because we grant them lives long and 
prosperous, that it is better for their souls: we grant them long and 
prosperous lives only that their iniquity may be increased; and they shall 
suffer an ignominious punishment.
     GOD is not disposed to leave the faithful in the condition which ye are 
now in,a until he sever the wicked from the good;
     nor is GOD disposed to make you acquainted with what is a hidden secret, 
but GOD chooseth such of his apostles as he pleaseth, to reveal his mind 
unto:b believe therefore in GOD, and his apostles; and if ye believe, and fear 
God, ye shall receive a great reward.
     And let not those who are covetous of what GOD of his bounty hath granted 
them imagine that their avarice is better for them: nay, rather it is worse 
for them.
     That which they have covetously reserved shall be bound as a collar about 
their neck,c on the day of the resurrection: unto GOD belongeth the 
inheritance of heaven and earth; and GOD is well acquainted with what ye do.

	x  The persons who thus endeavoured to discourage the Mohammedans were, 
according to one tradition, some of the tribe of Abd Kais, who, going to 
Medina, were bribed by Abu Sofiān with a camel's load of dried raisins; and, 
according to another tradition, it was Noaim Ebn Masśd al Ashjaļ who was also 
bribed with a she-camel ten months gone with young (a valuable present in 
Arabia).  This Noaim, they say, finding Mohammed and his men preparing for the 
expedition, told them that Abu Sofiān, to spare them the pains of coming so 
far as Bedr, would seek them in their own houses, and that none of them could 
possibly escape otherwise than by timely flight.  Upon which Mohammed, seeing 
his followers a little dispirited, swore that he would go himself though not 
one of them went with him.  And accordingly he set out with seventy horsemen, 
every one of them crying out, Hashna Allah, i.e., GOD is our support.3
	y  While they stayed at Bedr expecting the enemy, they opened a kind of 
fair there, and traded to very considerable profit.4
	z  Meaning either Noaim, or Abu Sofiān himself.
	a  That is, he will not suffer the good and sincere among you to 
continue indiscriminately mixed with the wicked and hypocritical.
	b  This passage was revealed on the rebellious and disobedient 
Mohammedans telling Mohammed that if he was a true prophet he could easily 
distinguish those who sincerely believed from the dissemblers.1
	c  Mohammed is said to have declared, that whoever pays not his legal 
contribution of alms duly shall have a serpent twisted about his neck at the 

	3  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.		4  Al Beidāwi.		1  Idem.	
	2  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.

     GOD hath already heard the saying of those who said, Verily GOD is poor, 
and we are rich:d we will surely write down what they have said, and the 
slaughter which they have made of the prophets without a cause; and we will 
say unto them, Taste ye the pain of burning.
     This shall they suffer for the evil which their hands have sent before 
them, and because GOD is not unjust towards mankind;
     who also say, Surely GOD hath commanded us, that we should not give 
credit to any apostle, until one should come unto us with a sacrifice, which 
should be consumed by fire.e
180	Say, Apostles have already come unto you before me,f with plain proofs, 
and with the miracle which ye mention: why therefore have ye slain them, if ye 
speak truth?
     If they accuse thee of imposture, the apostles before thee have also been 
accounted impostors, who brought evident demonstrations, and the scriptures, 
and the book which enlighteneth the understanding.
     Every soul shall taste of death, and ye shall have your reward on the day 
of resurrection; and he who shall be far removed from hell fire, and shall be 
admitted into paradise, shall be happy: but the present life is only a 
deceitful provision.
     Ye shall surely be proved in your possessions, and in your persons; and 
ye shall bear from those unto whom the scripture was delivered before you, and 
from the idolaters, much hurt: but if ye be patient and fear God, this is a 
matter that is absolutely determined.
     And when GOD accepted the covenant of those to whom the book of the law 
was given, saying, Ye shall surely publish it unto mankind, ye shall not hide 
it: yet they threw it behind their backs, and sold it for a small price: but 
woful is the price for which they have sold it.g
     Think not that they who rejoice at what they have done, and expect to be 
praised for what they have not done;h think not, O prophet, that they shall 
escape from punishment, for they shall suffer a painful punishment;

	d  It is related that Mohammed, writing to the Jews of the tribe of 
Kainokā to invite them to Islām, and exhorting them, among other things, in 
the words of the Korān,3 to lend unto GOD on good usury, Phineas Ebn Azūra, on 
hearing that expression, said, Surely GOD is poor, since they ask to borrow 
for him.  Whereupon Abu Becr, who was the bearer of that letter, struck him on 
the face, and told him that if it had not been for the truce between them, he 
would have struck off his head; and on Phineas's complaining to Mohammed of 
Abu Becr's ill usage, this passage was revealed.4
	e  The Jews, say the commentators, insisted that it was a peculiar proof 
of the mission of all the prophets sent to them, that they could, by their 
prayers, bring down fire from heaven to consume the sacrifice, and therefore 
they expected Mohammed should do the like.  And some Mohammedan doctors agree 
that GOD appointed this miracle as the test of all their prophets, except only 
Jesus and Mohammed;5 though others say any other miracle was a proof full as 
sufficient as the bringing down fire from heaven.6
	The Arabian Jews seem to have drawn a general consequence from some 
particular instances of this miracle in the Old Testament.7  And the Jews at 
this day say, that first the fire which fell from heaven on the altar of the 
tabernacle,8 after the consecration of Aaron and his sons, and afterwards that 
which descended on the altar of Solomon's temple, at the dedication of that 
structure,9 was fed and constantly maintained there by the priests, both day 
and night, without being suffered once to go out, till it was extinguished, as 
some think, in the reign of Manasses,10 but, according to the more received 
opinion, when the temple was destroyed by the Chaldeans.  Several Christians11 
have given credit to this assertion of the Jews, with what reason I shall not 
here inquire; and the Jews, in consequence of this notion, might probably 
expect that a prophet who came to restore GOD'S true religion, should rekindle 
for them this heavenly fire, which they have not been favoured with since the 
Babylonish captivity.
	f  Among these the commentators reckon Zacharias and John the Baptist.
	g  i.e., Dearly shall they pay hereafter for taking bribes to stifle the 
truth.  Whoever concealeth the knowledge which GOD has given him, says 
Mohammed, GOD shall put on him a bridle of fire on the day of resurrection.
	h  i.e., Who think they have done a commendable deed in concealing and 
dissembling the testimonies in the Pentateuch concerning Mohammed, and in 
disobeying GOD'S commands to the contrary.  It is said that, Mohammed once 
asking some Jews concerning a passage in their law, they gave him an answer 
very different from the truth, and were mightily pleased that they had, as 
they thought, deceived him.  Others, however, think this passage relates to 
some pretended Mohammedans who rejoiced in their hypocrisy, and expected to be 
commended for their wickedness.12

	3  Cap. 2, p. 26.		4  Al Beidāwi.		5  Jallalo'ddin.	
	6  Al Beidāwi.
7  Levit. ix. 24; I Chron. xxi. 26; 2 Chron. vii. I; 1 Kings xviii. 38.	
	8  Levit. ix. 24.		9  2 Chron. vii. x.
10  Talmud, Zebachim, c. 6.		11  See Prideaux's Connect part i. bk. 
iii. p. 158.		12  Al Beidāwi.

     and unto GOD belongeth the kingdom of heaven and earth: GOD is almighty.
     Now in the creation of heaven and earth, and the vicissitude of night and 
day, are signs unto those who are endued with understanding;
     who remember GOD standing, and sitting, and lying on their sides;i and 
meditate on the creation of heaven and earth, saying, O LORD, thou hast not 
created this in vain; far be it from thee: therefore deliver us from the 
torment of hell fire:
     O LORD, surely whom thou shalt throw into the fire, thou wilt also cover 
with shame: nor shall the ungodly have any to help them.
190	O LORD, we have heard a preacherk inviting us to the faith and saying, 
Believe in your LORD: and we believed.
     O LORD, forgive us therefore our sins, and expiate our evil deeds from 
us, and make us to die with the righteous.
     O LORD, give us also the reward which thou hast promised by thy apostles; 
and cover us not with shame on the day of resurrection; for thou art not 
contrary to the promise.
     Their LORD therefore answered them, saying, I will not suffer the work of 
him among you who worketh to be lost, whether he be male, or female:l the one 
of you is from the other.
     They therefore who have left their country, and have been turned out of 
their houses, and have suffered for my sake, and have been slain in battle; 
verily I will expiate their evil deeds from them, and I will surely bring them 
into gardens watered by rivers;
     a reward from GOD; and with GOD is the most excellent reward.
     Let not the prosperous dealing of the unbelievers in the land deceive 
thee;m it is but a slender provision;n and then their receptacle shall be 
hell; an unhappy couch shall it be.
     But they who fear the LORD shall have gardens through which rivers flow, 
they shall continue therein forever: this is the gift of GOD for what is with 
GOD shall be better for the righteous than short-lived worldly prosperity.
     There are some of those who have received the scriptures, who believe in 
GOD, and that which hath been sent down unto you, and that which hath been 
sent down to them, submitting themselves unto GOD;o they tell not the signs of 
GOD for a small price:

	i  viz., At all times and in all postures.  Al Beidāwi mentions a saying 
of Mohammed to one Imrān Ebn Hosein, to this purpose: Pray standing, if thou 
art able; if not, sitting; and if thou canst not sit up, then as thou liest 
along.  Al Shāfeļ directs that he sick should pray lying on their right side.
	k  Namely, Mohammed, with the Korān.
	l  These words were added, as some relate, on Omm Salma, one of the 
prophet's wives, telling him that she had observed GOD often made mention of 
the men who fled their country for the sake of their faith, but took no notice 
of the women.1
	m  The original word properly signifies success in the affairs of life, 
and particularly in trade.  It is said that some of Mohammed's followers 
observing the prosperity the idolaters enjoyed, expressed their regret that 
those enemies of GOD should live in such ease and plenty, while themselves 
were perishing for hunger and fatigue; whereupon this passage was revealed.2
	n  Because of its short continuance.
	o  The persons here meant, some will have to be Abda'llah Ebn Salām3 and 
his companions; others suppose they were forty Arabs of Najrān, or thirty-two 
Ethiopians, or else eight Greeks, who were converted from Christianity to 
Mohammedism; and others say this passage was revealed in the ninth year of the 
Hejra, when Mohammed, on Gabriel's bringing him the news of the death of 
Ashama king of Ethiopia, who had embraced the Mohammedan religion some years 
before,4 prayed for the soul of the departed; at which some of his 
hypocritical followers were displeased, and wondered that he should pray for a 
Christian proselyte whom he had never seen.5

	1  Idem.		2  Idem.		3  See before, p. 44.		4  See 
the Prelim. Discourse, Sect. II.		5  Al Beidāwi.

     these shall have their reward with their LORD; for GOD is swift in taking 
an account.p
200	O true believers, be patient and strive to excel in patience, and be 
constant-minded, and fear GOD, that ye may be happy.





     O MEN, fear your LORD, who hath created you out of one man, and out of 
him created his wife, and from them two hath multiplied many men, and women: 
and fear GOD by whom ye beseech one another;r and respect womens who have 
borne you, for GOD is watching over you.
     And give the orphans when they come to age their substance; and render 
them not in exchange bad for good:t and devour not their substance, by adding 
it to your own substance; for this is a great sin.
     And if ye fear that ye shall not act with equity towards orphans of the 
female sex, take in marriage of such other women as please you, two, or three, 
or four, and not more.u  But if ye fear that ye cannot act equitably towards 
so many, marry one only, or the slaves which ye shall have acquired.x  This 
will be easier, that ye swerve not from righteousness.  And give women their 
dowry freely; but if they voluntarily remit unto you any part of it, enjoy it 
with satisfaction and advantage.
     And give not unto those who are weak of understanding the substance which 
GOD hath appointed you to preserve for them; but maintain them thereout, and 
clothe them, and speak kindly unto them.

	p  See before, p. 21, and the Preliminary Discourse, Sect. IV.
	q  This title was given to this chapter, because it chiefly treats of 
matters relating to women; as, marriages, divorces, dower, prohibited degrees, 
	r  Saying, I beseech thee for GOD'S sake.1
	s  Literally, the wombs.
	t  That is, take not what ye find of value among their effects to your 
own use, and give them worse in its stead.
	u  The commentators understand this passage differently.  The true 
meaning seems to be as it is here translated; Mohammed advising his followers 
that if they found they should wrong the female orphans under their care, 
either by marrying them against their inclinations, ought, by reason of their 
having already several wives, they should rather choose to marry other women, 
to avoid all occasion of sin.2  Others say that when this passage was 
revealed, many of the Arabians, fearing trouble and temptation, refused to 
take upon them the charge of orphans, and yet multiplied wives to a great 
excess, and used them ill; or, as others write, gave themselves up to 
fornication; which occasioned this passage.  And according to these, its 
meaning must be either that if they feared they could not act justly towards 
orphans, they had as great reason to apprehend they could not deal equitably 
with so many wives, and therefore are commanded to marry but a certain number; 
or else, that since fornication was a crime as well as wronging of orphans, 
they ought to avoid that also, by marrying according to their abilities.3
	x  For slaves requiring not so large a dower, nor so good and plentiful 
a maintenance as free women, a man might keep several of the former, as easily 
as one of the latter.

		1  Idem.		2  Idem		3  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.

     And examine the orphansy until they attain the age of marriage:z but if 
ye perceive they are able to manage their affairs well, deliver their 
substance unto them; and waste it not extravagantly, or hastily,
     because they grow up.a  Let him who is rich abstain entirely from the 
orphans' estates; and let him who is poor take thereof according to what shall 
be reasonable.b
     And when ye deliver their substance unto them, call witnesses thereof in 
their presence: GOD taketh sufficient account of your actions.
     Men ought to have a part of what their parents and kindred leavec behind 
them when they die: and women also ought to have a part of what their parents 
and kindred leave, whether it be little, or whether it be much; a determinate 
part is due to them.
     And when they who are of kin are present at the dividing of what is left, 
and also the orphans, and the poor; distribute unto them some part thereof; 
and if the estate be too small, at least speak comfortably unto them.
10	And let those fear to abuse orphans, who if they leave behind them a 
weak offspring, are solicitous for them; let them therefore fear GOD, and 
speak that which is convenient.d
     Surely they who devour the possessions of orphans unjustly shall swallow 
down nothing but fire into their bellies, and shall broil in raging flames.
     GOD hath thus commanded you concerning your children.  A male shall have 
as much as the share of two females:e but if they be females only, and above 
two in number, they shall have two third parts of what the deceased shall 
leave;f and if there be but one, she shall have the half.g  And the parents of 
the deceased shall have each of them a sixth part of what he shall leave, if 
he have a child; but if he have no child, and his parents be his heirs, then 
his mother shall have the third part.h  And if he have brethren, his mother 
shall have a sixth part, after the legaciesi which he shall bequeath, and his 
debts be paid.  Ye know not whether your parents or your children be of 
greater use unto you.  This is an ordinance from GOD, and GOD is knowing and 

	y  i.e., Try whether they be well grounded in the principles of 
religion, and have sufficient prudence for the management of their affairs.  
Under this expression is also comprehended the duty of a curator's instructing 
his pupils in those respects.
	z  Or age of maturity, which is generally reckoned to be fifteen; a 
decision supported by a tradition of their prophet, though Abu Hanīfah thinks 
eighteen the proper age.1
	a  i.e., Because they will shortly be of age to receive what belongs to 
	b  That is, no more than what shall make sufficient recompense for the 
trouble of their education.
	c  This law was given to abolish a custom of the pagan Arabs, who 
suffered not women or children to have any part of their husband's or father's 
inheritance, on pretence that they only should inherit who were able to go to 
	d  viz., Either to comfort the children, or to assure the dying father 
they shall be justly dealt by.3
	e  This is the general rule to be followed in the distribution of the 
estate of the deceased, as may be observed in the following cases.4
	f  Or if there be two and no more, they will have the same share.
	g  And the remaining third part, or the remaining moiety of the estate, 
which is not here expressly disposed of, if the deceased leaves behind him no 
son, nor a father, goes to the public treasury.  It must be observed that Mr. 
Selden is certainly mistaken when, in explaining this passage of the Korān, he 
says, that where there is a son and an only daughter, each of them will have a 
moiety:5 for the daughter can have a moiety but in one case only, that is, 
where there is no son; for if there be a son, she can have but a third, 
according to the above-mentioned rule.
	h  And his father consequently the other two-thirds.6
	i  By legacies, in this and the following passages, are chiefly meant 
those bequeathed to pious uses; for the Mohammedans approve not of a person's 
giving away his substance from his family and near relations on any other 

	1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.		4  Vide 
Prelim. Disc. Sect. VI.		5  Selden, de Success. ad Leges Ebręor. l. I, c. 
I.		6  Al Beidāwi.

     Moreover ye may claim half of what your wives shall leave, if they have 
no issue; but if they have issue, then ye shall have the fourth part of what 
they shall leave, after the legacies which they shall bequeath, and the debts 
be paid.
     They also shall have the fourth part of what ye shall leave, in case ye 
have no issue; but if ye have issue, then they shall have the eighth part of 
what ye shall leave, after the legacies which ye shall bequeath, and your 
debts be paid.
     And if a man or woman's substance be inherited by a distant relation,k 
and he or she have a brother or sister; each of them two shall have a sixth 
part of the estate.l  But if there be more than this number, they shall be 
equal sharers in a third part, after payment of the legacies which shall be 
bequeathed, and the debts,
     without prejudice to the heirs.  This is an ordinance from GOD: and GOD 
is knowing and gracious.
     These are the statutes of GOD.  And whoso obeyeth GOD and his apostle, 
God shall lead him into gardens wherein rivers flow, they shall continue 
therein forever; and this shall be great happiness.
     But whoso disobeyeth GOD, and his apostle, and transgresseth his 
statutes, God shall cast him into hell fire; he shall remain therein forever, 
and he shall suffer a shameful punishment.
     If any of your women be guilty of whoredom,m produce four witnesses from 
among you against them, and if they bear witness against them, imprison them 
in separate apartments until death release them, or GOD affordeth them a way 
to escape.n
20	And if two of you commit the like wickedness,o punish them both:p but if 
they repent and amend, let them both alone; for GOD is easy to be reconciled 
and merciful.
     Verily repentance will be accepted with GOD, from those who do evil 
ignorantly, and then repent speedily; unto them will GOD be turned: for GOD is 
knowing and wise.
     But no repentance shall be accepted from those who do evil until the time 
when death presenteth itself unto one of them, and he saith, Verily I repent 
now; nor unto those who die unbelievers; for them have we prepared a grievous 

	k  For this may happen by contract, or on some other special occasion.
	l  Here, and in the next case, the brother and sister are made equal 
sharers, which is an exception to the general rule, of giving a male twice as 
much as a female; and the reason is said to be because of the smallness of the 
portions, which deserve not such exactness of distribution; for in other cases 
the rule holds between brother and sister, as well as other relations.1
	m  Either adultery or fornication.
	n  Their punishment, in the beginning of Mohammedism, was to be immured 
till they died, but afterwards this cruel doom was mitigated, and they might 
avoid it by undergoing the punishment ordained in its stead by the Sonna, 
according to which the maidens are to be scourged with a hundred stripes, and 
to be banished for a full year; and the married women to be stoned.2
	o  The commentators are not agreed whether the text speaks of 
fornication or sodomy.  Al Zamakhshari, and from him, al Beidāwi, supposes the 
former is here meant: but Jallalo'ddin is of opinion that the crime intended 
in this passage must be committed between two men, and not between a man and a 
woman; not only because the pronouns are in the masculine gender, but because 
both are ordered to suffer the same slight punishment, and are both allowed 
the same repentance and indulgence; and especially for that a different and 
much severer punishment is appointed for the women in the preceding words.  
Abu'l Kāsem Hebatallah takes simple fornication to be the crime intended, and 
that this passage is abrogated by that of the 24th chapter, where the man and 
the woman who shall be guilty of fornication are ordered to be scourged with a 
hundred stripes each.
	p  The original is, Do them some hurt or damage: by which some 
understand that they are only to reproach them in public,3 or strike them on 
the head with their slippers4 (a great indignity in the east), though some 
imagine they may be scourged.5

	1  See this chapter, near the end.		2  Jallalo'ddin.		3  
Jallalo'ddin, Yahya, Abul Kāsem Habatallah, al Beidāwi.
4  Jallalo'ddin  al Beidāwi.		5  Al Beidāwi.

     O true believers, it is not lawful for you to be heirs of women against 
their will,q nor to hinder them from marrying others,r that ye may take away 
part of what ye have given them in dowry; unless they have been guilty of a 
manifest crime:s but converse kindly with them.  And if ye hate them, it may 
happen that ye may hate a thing wherein GOD hath placed much good.
     If ye be desirous to exchange a wife for another wife,t and ye have 
already given one of them a talent,u take not away anything therefrom:x will 
ye take it by slandering her, and doing her manifest injustice?
     And how can ye take it, since the one of you hath gone in unto the other, 
and they have received from you a firm covenant?
     Marry not women whom your fathers have had to wife; (except what is 
already past:) for this is uncleanness, and an abomination, and an evil way.
     Ye are forbidden to marry your mothers, and your daughters, and your 
sisters, and your aunts both on the father's and on the mother's side, and 
your brothers' daughters, and your sisters' daughters, and your mothers who 
have given you suck, and your foster-sisters, and your wives' mothers, and 
your daughters-in-law which are under your tuition, born of your wives unto 
whom ye have gone in, (but if ye have not gone in unto them, it shall be no 
sin in you to marry them, ) and the wives of your sons who proceed out of your 
loins; and ye are also forbidden to take to wife two sisters,y except what is 
already past: for GOD is gracious and merciful.
     Ye are also forbidden to take to wife free women who are married, except 
those women whom your right hands shall possess as slaves.z  This is ordained 
you from GOD.  Whatever is beside this is allowed you; that ye may with your 
substance provide wives for yourselves, acting that which is right, and 
avoiding whoredom.  And for the advantage which ye receive from them, give 
them their reward,a according to what is ordained: but it shall be no crime in 
you to make any other agreement among yourselves,b after the ordinance shall 
be complied with; for GOD is knowing and wise.

	q  It was customary among the pagan Arabs, when a man died, for one of 
his relations to claim a right to his widow, which he asserted by throwing his 
garment over her; and then he either married her himself, if he thought fit, 
on assigning her the same dower that her former husband had done, or kept her 
dower and married her to another, or else refused to let her marry unless she 
redeemed herself by quitting what she might claim of her husband's goods.1  
This unjust custom is abolished by this passage.
	r  Some say these words are directed to husbands who used to imprison 
their wives without any just cause, and out of covetousness, merely to make 
them relinquish their dower or their inheritance.2
	s  Such as disobedience, ill behaviour, immodesty, and the like.3
	t  That is, by divorcing one, and marrying another.
	u  i.e., Ever so large a dower.
	x  See chapter 2, p. 25.
	y  The same was also prohibited by the Levitical law.4
	z  According to this passage it is not lawful to marry a free woman that 
is already married, be she a Mohammedan or not, unless she be legally parted 
from her husband by divorce; but it is lawful to marry those who are slaves, 
or taken in war, after they shall have gone through the proper purifications, 
though their husbands be living.  Yet, according to the decision of Abu 
Hanīfah, it is not lawful to marry such whose husbands shall be taken, or in 
actual slavery with them.1
	a  That is, assign them their dower.
	b  That is, either to increase the dower, or to abate some part or even 
the whole of it.

	1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.		4  Levit. 
xviii. 18.		1  Al Beidāwi.

     Whoso among you hath not means sufficient that he may marry free women, 
who are believers, let him marry with such of your maid-servants whom your 
right hands possess, as are true believers; for GOD well knoweth your faith.  
Ye are the one from the other:c therefore marry them with the consent of their 
masters; and give them their dower according to justice; such as are modest, 
not guilty of whoredom, nor entertaining lovers.
30	And when they are married, if they be guilty of adultery, they shall 
suffer half the punishment which is appointed for the free women.d  This is 
allowed unto him among you, who feareth to sin by marrying free women; but if 
ye abstain from marrying slaves, it will be better for you; GOD is gracious 
and merciful.
     GOD is willing to declare these things unto you, and to direct you 
according to the ordinances of those who have gone before you,e and to be 
merciful unto you.  GOD is knowing and wise.
     GOD desireth to be gracious unto you; but they who follow their lusts,f 
desire that ye should turn aside from the truth with great deviation.  GOD is 
minded to make his religion light unto you: for man was created weak.g
     O true believers, consume not your wealth among yourselves in vanity;h 
unless there be merchandising among you by mutual consent: neither slay 
yourselves;i for GOD is merciful towards you:
     and whoever doth this maliciouslyk and wickedly, he will surely cast him 
to be broiled in hell fire; and this is easy with GOD.
     If ye turn aside from the grievous sins,l of those which ye are forbidden 
to commit, we will cleanse you from your smaller faults; and will introduce 
you into paradise with an honourable entry.
     Covet not that which GOD hath bestowed on some of you preferably to 
others.m  Unto the men shall be given a portion of what they shall have 
gained, and unto the women shall be given a portion of what they shall have 
gained:n therefore ask GOD of his bounty; for GOD is omniscient.

	c  Being alike descended from Adam, and of the same faith.2
	d  The reason of this is because they are not presumed to have had so 
good education.  A slave, therefore, in such a case, is to have fifty stripes, 
and to be banished for half a year; but she shall not be stoned, because it is 
a punishment which cannot be inflicted by halves.3
	e  viz., Of the prophets, and other holy and prudent men of former 
	f  Some commentators suppose that these words have a particular regard 
to the Magians, who formerly were frequently guilty of incestuous marriages, 
their prophet Zerdusht having allowed them to take their mothers and sisters 
to wife; and also to the Jews, who likewise might marry within some of the 
degrees here prohibited.5
	g  Being unable to refrain from women, and too subject to be led away by 
carnal appetites.6
	h  That is, employ it not in things prohibited by GOD; such as usury, 
extortion, rapine, gaming, and the like.7
	i  Literally, slay not your souls; i.e., says Jallalo'ddin, by 
committing mortal sins, or such crimes as will destroy them.  Others, however, 
are of opinion that self-murder, which the gentile Indians did, and still do, 
often practise in honour of their idols, or else the taking away the life of 
any true believer, is hereby forbidden.8
	k  See Wisdom xvi. 14, in the Vulgate.
	l  These sins al Beidāwi, from a tradition of Mohammed, reckons to be 
seven (equaling in number the sins called deadly by Christians), that is to 
say, idolatry, murder, falsely accusing modest women of adultery, wasting the 
substance of orphans, taking of usury, desertion in a religious expedition, 
and disobedience to parents.  But Ebn Abbās says they amount to near seven 
hundred; and others suppose that idolatry only, of different kinds, in 
worshipping idols or any creature, either in opposition to or jointly with the 
true God, is here intended; that sin being generally esteemed by Mohammedans, 
and in a few lines after declared by the Korān itself, to be the only one 
which God will not pardon.1
	m  Such as honour, power, riches, and other worldly advantages.  Some, 
however, understand this of the distribution of inheritances according to the 
preceding determinations, whereby some have a larger share than others.2
	n  That is, they shall be blessed according to their deserts; and ought, 
therefore, instead of displeasing God by envying of others, to endeavor to 
merit his favour by good works and to apply to him by prayer.

	2  Idem.		3  Idem.		4  Jallalo'ddin.  Al Beidāwi.	
	5  Al Beidāwi.		6  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.		7  Idem.	
	8  Idem.		1  Idem.  See before, c. 2, p. 10.		2  Idem, 

     We have appointed unto every one kindred, to inherit part of what their 
parents and relations shall leave at their deaths.  And unto those with whom 
your right hands have made an alliance, give their part of the inheritance;o 
for GOD is witness of all things.
     Men shall have the preėminence above women, because of those advantages 
wherein GOD hath caused the one of them to excel the other,p and for that 
which they expend of their substance in maintaining their wives.  The honest 
women are obedient. careful in the absence of their husbands,q for that GOD 
preserveth them, by committing them to the care and protection of the men.  
But those, whose perverseness ye shall be apprehensive of, rebuke; and remove 
them into separate apartments,r and chastise them.s  But if they shall be 
obedient unto you, seek not an occasion of quarrel against them: for GOD is 
high and great.
     And if ye fear a breach between the husband and wife, send a judget out 
of his family, and a judge out of her family: if they shall desire a 
reconciliation, GOD will cause them to agree; for GOD is knowing and wise.
40	Serve GOD, and associate no creature with him; and show kindness unto 
parents, and relations, and orphans, and the poor, and your neighbor who is of 
kin to you,u and also your neighbor who is a stranger, and to your familiar 
companion, and the traveller, and the captives whom your right hands shall 
possess; for GOD loveth not the proud or vain-glorious,
     who are covetous, and recommend covetousness unto men, and conceal that 
which GOD of his bounty hath given themx (we have prepared a shameful 
punishment for the unbelievers;)
     and who bestow their wealth in charity to be observed of men, and believe 
not in GOD, nor in the last day; and whoever hath Satan for a companion, an 
evil companion hath he!
     And what harm would befall them if they should believe in GOD, and the 
last day, and give alms out of that which GOD hath bestowed on them? since GOD 
knoweth them who do this.
     Verily GOD will not wrong any one even the weight of an ant:y and if it 
be a good action, he will double it, and will recompense it in his sight with 
a great reward.

	o  A precept conformable to an old custom of the Arabs, that where 
persons mutually entered into a strict friendship or confederacy, the 
surviving friend should have a sixth part of the deceased's estate.  But this 
was afterwards abrogated, according to Jallalo'ddin and al Zamakhshari, at 
least as to infidels.  The passage may likewise be understood of a private 
contract, whereby the survivor is to inherit a certain part of the substance 
of him that dies first.3
	p  Such as superior understanding and strength, and the other privileges 
of the male sex, which enjoys the dignities in church and state, goes to war 
in defence of GOD'S true religion, and claims a double share of their deceased 
ancestors' estates.4
	q  Both to preserve their husband's substance from loss or waste, and 
themselves from all degrees of immodesty.5
	r  That is, banish them from your bed.
	s  By this passage the Mohammedans are in plain terms allowed to beat 
their wives, in case of stubborn disobedience; but not in a violent or 
dangerous manner.6
	t  i.e., Let the magistrate first send two arbitrators or mediators, one 
on each side, to compose the difference, and prevent, if possible, the ill 
consequences of an open rupture.
	u  Either of your own nation or religion.
	x  Whether it be wealth, knowledge, or any other talent whereby they may 
help their neighbour.
	y  Either by diminishing the recompense due to his good actions, or too 
severely punishing his sins.  On the contrary, he will reward the former in 
the next life far above their deserts.  The Arabic word dharra, which is 
translated an ant, signifies a very small sort of that insect, and is used to 
denote a thing that is exceeding small, as a mite.

	3  Vide al Beidāwi.		4  Idem.		5  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.	
	6  Idem.

     How will it be with the unbelievers when we shall bring a witness out of 
each nation against itself,z and shall bring thee, O Mohammed, a witness 
against these people?a  In that day they who have not believed, and have 
rebelled against the apostle of God, shall wish the earth was levelled with 
them; and they shall not be able to hide any matter from GOD.
     O true believers, come not to prayers when ye are drunk,b until ye 
understand what ye say; nor when ye are polluted by emission of seed, unless 
ye be travelling on the road, until ye wash yourselves.  But if ye be sick or 
on a journey, or any of you come from easing nature, or have touched women, 
and find no water; take fine clean sand and rub your faces and your hands 
therewith;c for GOD is merciful and inclined to forgive.
     Hast thou not observed those unto whom part of the scriptured was 
delivered? they sell error, and desire that ye may wander from the right way; 
but GOD well knoweth your enemies.  GOD is a sufficient patron; and GOD is a 
sufficient helper.
     Of the Jews there are some who pervert words from their places;e and say, 
We have heard, and have disobeyed; and do thou hear without understanding our 
meaning,f and look upon us:g perplexing with their tongues, and reviling the 
true religion.
     But if they had said, We have heard, and do obey; and do thou hear, and 
regard us:h certainly it were better for them, and more right.  But GOD hath 
cursed them by reason of their infidelity; therefore a few of them only shall 
50	O ye to whom the scriptures have been given, believe in the revelation 
which we have sent down, confirming that which is with you; before we deface 
your countenances, and render them as the back parts thereof;i or curse them, 
as we cursed those who transgressed on the sabbath day;k and the command of 
GOD was fulfilled.
     Surely GOD will not pardon the giving him an equal;l but will pardon any 
other sin except that, to whom he pleasethm and whoso giveth a companion unto 
GOD, hath devised a great wickedness.

	z  When the prophet who was sent to each nation in particular, shall on 
the last day be produced to give evidence against such of them as refused to 
believe on him, or observed not the laws which he brought.
	a  That is, the Arabians, to whom Mohammed was, as he pretended, more 
peculiarly sent.1
	b  It is related, that before the prohibition of wine, Abd'alrahmān Ebn 
Awf made an entertainment, to which he invited several of the apostle's 
companions; and after they had ate and drunk plentifully, the hour of evening 
prayer being come, one of the company rose up to pray, but being overcome with 
liquor, made a shameful blunder in reciting a passage of the Korān; whereupon 
to prevent the danger of any such indecency for the future, this passage was 
	c  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.
	d  Meaning the Jews, and particularly their Rabbins.
	e  That is (according to the commentators), who change the true sense of 
the Pentateuch by dislocating passages, or by wresting the words according to 
their own fancies and lusts.3  But Mohammed seems chiefly to intend here the 
Jews bantering of him in their addresses, by making use of equivocal words, 
seeming to bear a good sense in Arabic, but spoken by them in derision 
according to their acceptation in Hebrew; an instance of which he gives in the 
following words.
	f  Literally, without being made to hear or apprehend what we say.
	g  The original word is Raļna, which being a term of reproach in Hebrew, 
Mohammed forbade their using to him.4
	h  In Arabic, Ondhorna; which having no ill equivocal meaning, the 
prophet ordered them to use instead of the former.
	i  That is, perfectly plain, without eyes, nose, or mouth.  The 
original, however, may also be translated, and turn them behind, by wringing 
their necks backward.
	k  And were therefore changed into apes.5
	l  That is, idolatry of all kinds.
	m  viz., To those who repent.6

	1  See before, c. 2, p. 16.		2  Al Beidāwi.		3  Idem, 
Jallalo'ddin.		4  See before, c. 2, p. 13.
5  See before, c. 2, p. 8.		6  Al Beidāwi.

     Hast thou not observed those who justify themselves?n  But GOD justifieth 
whomsoever he pleaseth, nor shall they be wronged a hair.o
     Behold, how they imagine a lie against GOD; and therein is iniquity 
sufficiently manifest.
     Hast thou not considered those to whom part of the scripture hath been 
given?  They believe in false gods and idols,p and say of those who believe 
not, These are more rightly directed in the way of truth, than they who 
believe on Mohammed.
     Those are the men whom God hath cursed and unto him whom GOD shall curse, 
thou shalt surely find no helper.
     Shall they have a part of the kingdom,q since even then they would not 
bestow the smallest matterr on men?
     Do they envy other men that which GOD of his bounty hath given them?s  We 
formerly gave unto the family of Abraham a book of revelations and wisdom; and 
we gave them a great kingdom.t
     There is of them who believeth on him;u and there is of them who turneth 
aside from him: but the raging fire of hell is a sufficient punishment.
     Verily those who disbelieve our signs, we will surely cast to be broiled 
in hell fire; so often as their skins shall be well burned, we will give them 
other skins in exchange, that they may taste the sharper torment; for GOD is 
mighty and wise.
60	But those who believe and do that which is right, we will bring into 
gardens watered by rivers, therein shall they remain forever, and there shall 
they enjoy wives free from all impurity; and we will lead them into perpetual 
     Moreover GOD commandeth you to restore what ye are trusted with, to the 
owners;x and when ye judge between men, that ye judge according to equity: and 
surely an excellent virtue it is to which GOD exhorteth you; for GOD both 
heareth and seeth.

	n  i.e., The Christians and Jews, who called themselves the children of 
GOD, and his beloved people.1
	o  The original word signifies a little skin in the cleft of a date-
stone, and is used to express a thing of no value.
	p  The Arabic is, in Jibt and Taghūt.  The former is supposed to have 
been the proper name of some idol; but it seems rather to signify any false 
deity in general.  The latter we have explained already.8
	It is said that this passage was revealed on the following occasion.  
Hoyai Ebn Akhtab and Caab Ebn al Ashraf,9 two chief men among the Jews, with 
several others of that religion, went to Mecca, and offered to enter into a 
confederacy with the Koreish, and to join their forces against Mohammed.  But 
the Koreish, entertaining some jealousy of them, told them, that the Jews 
pretended to have a written revelation from heaven, as well as Mohammed, and 
their doctrines and worship approached much nearer to what he taught, than the 
religion of their tribe; wherefore, said they, if you would satisfy us that 
you are sincere in the matter, do as we do, and worship our gods.  Which 
proposal, if the story be true, these Jews complied with, out of their 
inveterate hatred to Mohammed.1
	q  For the Jews gave out that they should be restored to their ancient 
power and grandeur;2 depending, it is to be presumed, on the victorious 
Messiah whom they expected.
	r  The original word properly signifies a small dent on the back of a 
date-stone, and is commonly used to express a thing of little or no value.
	s  viz., The spiritual gifts of prophecy, and divine revelations; and 
the temporal blessings of victory and success, bestowed on Mohammed and his 
	t  Wherefore GOD will doubtless show equal favour to this prophet (a 
descendant also of Abraham), and those who believe on him.3
	u  Namely, on Mohammed.
	x  This passage, it is said, was revealed on the day of the taking of 
Mecca, the primary design of it being to direct Mohammed to return the keys of 
the Caaba to Othmān Ebn Telha Ebn Abdaldār, who had then the honour to be 
keeper of that holy place,4 and not to deliver them to his uncle al Abbās, who 
having already the custody of the well Zemzem, would fain have had also that 
of the Caaba.  The prophet obeying the divine order, Othmān was so affected 
with the justice of the action, notwithstanding he had at first refused him 
entrance, that he immediately embraced Mohammedism; whereupon the guardianship 
of the Caaba was confirmed to this Othmān and his heirs for ever.5

	7  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.  See c. 5, not far from the beginning.	
	8  See p. 28, note t.		9  See before, p. 40, note m.
1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.		4  See Prideaux's 
Life of Mahomet, p. 2.
5  Al Beidāwi   See D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 220, 221.

     O true believers, obey GOD, and obey the apostle; and those who are in 
authority among you: and if ye differ, in anything, refer it unto GODy and the 
apostle, if ye believe in GOD, and the last day: this is better, and a fairer 
method of determination.
     Hast thou not observed those who pretend they believe in what hath been 
revealed unto thee, and what hath been revealed before thee?  They desire to 
go to judgment before Taghūt,z although they have been commanded not to 
believe in him; and Satan desireth to seduce them into a wide error.
     And when it is said unto them, Come unto the book which GOD hath sent 
down, and to the apostle; thou seest the ungodly turn aside from thee, with 
great aversion.
     But how will they behave when a misfortune shall befall them, for that 
which their hands have sent before them?  Then will they come unto thee, and 
swear by GOD, saying, If we intended any other than to do good, and to 
reconcile the parties.a
     GOD knoweth what is in the hearts of these men; therefore let them alone, 
and admonish them, and speak unto them a word which may affect their souls.
     We have not sent any apostle, but that he might be obeyed by the 
permission of GOD: but if they, after they have injured their own souls,b come 
unto thee, and ask pardon of GOD, and the apostle ask pardon for them, they 
shall surely find GOD easy to be reconciled and merciful.
     And by thy LORD they will not perfectly believe, until they make thee 
judge of their controversies; and shall not afterwards find in their own minds 
any hardship in what thou shalt determine, but shall acquiesce therein with 
entire submission.
     And if we had commanded them, saying, Slay yourselves, or depart from 
your houses;c they would not have done it except a few of them.  And if they 
had done what they were admonished, it would certainly have been better for 
them, and more efficacious for confirming their faith;
70	and we should then have surely given them in our sight an exceeding 
great reward, and we should have directed them in the right way.
     Whoever obeyeth GOD and the apostle, they shall be with those unto whom 
GOD hath been gracious, of the prophets, and the sincere, and the martyrs, and 
the righteous; and these are the most excellent company.

	y  i.e., To the decision of the Korān.
	z  That is, before the tribunals of infidels.  This passage was 
occasioned by the following remarkable accident.  A certain Jew having a 
dispute with a wicked Mohammedan, the latter appealed to the judgment of Caab 
Ebn al Ashraf, a principal Jew, and the former to Mohammed.  But at length 
they agreed to refer the matter to the prophet singly, who, giving it in favor 
of the Jew, the Mohammedan refused to acquiesce in his sentence, but would 
needs have it re-heard by Omar, afterwards Khalif.  When they came to him, the 
Jew told him that Mohammed had already decided the affair in his favour, but 
that the other would not submit to his determination; and the Mohammedan 
confessing this to be true, Omar bid them stay a little, and fetching his 
sword, struck off the obstinate Moslem's head, saying aloud, This is the 
reward of him who refuseth to submit to the judgment of God and his apostle.  
And from this action Omar had the surname of al Farūk, which alludes both to 
his separating that knave's head from his body, and to his distinguishing 
between truth and falsehood.1  The name of Taghūt,2 therefore, in this place, 
seems to be given to Caab Ebn al Ashraf.
	a  For this was the excuse of the friends of the Mohammedan whom Omar 
slew, when they came to demand satisfaction for his blood.3
	b  viz., By acting wickedly, and appealing to the judgment of the 
	c  Some understand these words of their venturing their lives in a 
religious expedition; and others, of their undergoing the same punishments 
which the Israelites did for their idolatry in worshipping the golden calf.4

	1  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.  See D'Herbel.  Bibl. Orient. p. 688, and 
Ockley's Hist. of the Sarac. v. I, p. 365.		2  See before, p. 28.
3  Al Beidāwi.		4  Idem, see before, p. 7

     This is bounty from GOD; and GOD is sufficiently knowing.
     O true believers, take your necessary precautiond against your enemies, 
and either go forth to war in separate parties, or go forth all together in a 
     There is of you who tarrieth behind;e and if a misfortune befall you, he 
saith, Verily GOD hath been gracious unto me, that I was not present with 
     but if success attend you from GOD, he will say (as if there was no 
friendship between you and him),f Would to GOD I had been with them, for I 
should have acquired great merit.
     Let them therefore fight for the religion of GOD, who part with the 
present life in exchange for that which is to come;g for whosoever fighteth 
for the religion of GOD, whether he be slain, or be victorious,h we will 
surely give him a great reward.
     And what ails you, that ye fight not for GOD'S true religion, and in 
defence of the weak among men, women, and children,i who say, O LORD, bring us 
forth from this city, whose inhabitants are wicked; grant us from before thee 
a protector, and grant us from before thee a defender.k
     They who believe fight for the religion of GOD; but they who believe not 
fight for the religion of Taghūt.l  Fight therefore against the friends of 
Satan, for the stratagem of Satan is weak.
     Hast thou not observed those unto whom it was said, Withhold your hands 
from war, and be constant at prayers, and pay the legal alms?m  But when war 
is commanded them, behold a part of them fear men as they should fear GOD, or 
with a great fear, and say, O LORD, wherefore hast thou commanded us to go to 
war, and hast not suffered us to wait our approaching end?n  Say unto them, 
The provision of this life is but small; but the future shall be better for 
him who feareth God; and ye shall not be in the least injured at the day of 
80	Wheresoever ye be, death will overtake you, although ye be in lofty 
towers.  If good befall them, they say, This is from GOD; but if evil befall 
them, they say, This is from thee, O Mohammed:o say, All is from GOD; and what 
aileth these people, that they are so far from understanding what is said unto 

	d  i.e., Be vigilant, and provide yourselves with arms and necessaries.
	e  Mohammed here upbraids the hypocritical Moslems, who, for want of 
faith and constancy in their religion, were backward in going to war for its 
	f  i.e., As one who attendeth not to the public, but his own private 
interest.  Or else these may be the words of the hypocritical Mohammedan 
himself, insinuating that he stayed not behind the rest of the army by his own 
fault, but was left by Mohammed, who chose to let the others share in his good 
fortune, preferably to him.1
	g  By venturing their lives and fortunes in defence of the faith.
	h  For no man ought to quit the field till he either fall a martyr or 
gain some advantage for the cause.2
	i  viz., Those believers who stayed behind at Mecca, being detained 
there either forcibly by the idolaters, or for want of means to fly for refuge 
to Medina.  Al Beidāwi observes that children are mentioned here to show the 
inhumanity of the Koreish, who persecuted even that tender age.
	k  This petition, the commentators say, was heard.  For GOD afforded 
several of them an opportunity and means of escaping, and delivered the rest 
at the taking of Mecca by Mohammed, who left Otāb Ebn Osaid governor of the 
city: and under his care and protection, those who had suffered for their 
religion became the most considerable men in the place.
	l  See before, p. 28.
	m  These were some of Mohammed's followers, who readily performed the 
duties of their religion so long as they were commanded nothing that might 
endanger their lives.
	n  That is, a natural death.
	o  As the Jews, in particular, who pretended that their land was grown 
barren, and provisions scarce, since Mohammed came to Medina.3

			1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.

     Whatever good befalleth thee, O man, it is from GOD; and whatever evil 
befalleth thee, it is from thyself.p  We have sent thee an apostle unto men, 
and GOD is a sufficient witness thereof.
     Whoever obeyeth the apostle, obeyeth GOD; and whoever turneth back, we 
have not sent thee to be a keeper over them.q
     They say, Obedience: yet when they go forth from thee, part of them 
meditate by night a matter different from what thou speakest; but GOD shall 
write down what they meditate by night: therefore let them alone, and trust in 
GOD, for GOD is a sufficient protector.
     Do they not attentively consider the Koran? if it had been from any 
besides GOD, they would certainly have found therein many contradictions.
     When any news cometh unto them, either of security or fear, they 
immediately divulge it; but if they told it to the apostle and to those who 
are in authority among them, such of them would understand the truth of the 
matter, as inform themselves thereof from the apostle and his chiefs.  And if 
the favor of GOD and his mercy had not been upon you, ye had followed the 
devil, except a few of you.r
     Fight therefore for the religion of GOD, and oblige not any to what is 
difficult,s except thyself; however excite the faithful to war, perhaps GOD 
will restrain the courage of the unbelievers; for GOD is stronger than they, 
and more able to punish.
     He who intercedeth between men with a good intercessiont shall have a 
portion thereof; and he who intercedeth with an evil intercession shall have a 
portion thereof; for GOD overlooketh all things.
     When ye are saluted with a salutation, salute the person with a better 
salutation,u or at least return the same; for GOD taketh an account of all 
     GOD! there is no GOD but he; he will surely gather you together on the 
day of resurrection; there is no doubt of it: and who is more true than GOD in 
what he saith?
90	Why are ye divided concerning the ungodly into two parties;x since GOD 
hath overturned them for what they have committed?  Will ye direct him whom 
GOD hath led astray; since for him whom GOD shall lead astray, thou shalt find 
no true path?

	p  These words are not to be understood as contradictory to the 
preceding, That all proceeds from GOD; since the evil which befalls mankind, 
though ordered by GOD, is yet the consequence of their own wicked actions.
	q  Or, to take an account of their actions, for this is GOD'S part.
	r  That is, if GOD had not sent his apostle with the Korān to instruct 
you in your duty, ye had continued in idolatry and been doomed to destruction; 
except only those who, by GOD'S favour and their superior understanding, 
should have true notions of the divinity; such, for example, as Zeid Ebn Amru 
Ebn Nofail1 and Waraka Ebn Nawfal,2 who left idols, and acknowledged but one 
GOD, before the mission of Mohammed.3
	s  It is said this passage was revealed when the Mohammedans refused to 
follow their prophet to the lesser expedition of Bedr, so that he was obliged 
to set out with no more than seventy.4  Some copies vary in this place, and 
instead of la tokallafo, in the second person singular, read la nokallafo, in 
the first person plural, We do not oblige, &c.  The meaning being, that the 
prophet only was under an indispensable necessity of obeying GOD'S commands, 
however difficult, but others might choose, though at their peril.
	t  i.e., To maintain the right of a believer, or to prevent his being 
	u  By adding something farther.  As when one salutes another by this 
form, Peace be unto thee, he ought not only to return the salutation, but to 
add, and the mercy of GOD and his blessing.
	x  This passage was revealed, according to some, when certain of 
Mohammed's followers, pretending not to like Medina, desired leave to go 
elsewhere, and, having obtained it, went farther and farther, till they joined 
the idolaters; or, as others say, on occasion of some deserters at the battle 
of Ohod; concerning whom the Moslems were divided in opinion whether they 
should be slain as infidels or not.

	1  Vide Millium, de Mohammedismo ante Moh. p. 311.		2  See the 
Prelim.  Disc. Sect. II.		3  Al Beidāwi.
4  See before, c. 3, p. 49.

     They desire that ye should become infidels, as they are infidels, and 
that ye should be equally wicked with themselves.  Therefore take not friends 
from among them, until they fly their country for the religion of GOD; and if 
they turn back from the faith, take them, and kill them wherever ye find them; 
and take no friend from among them, nor any helper,
     except those who go unto a people who are in alliance with you,y or those 
who come unto you, their hearts forbidding them either to fight against you, 
or to fight against their own people.z  And if GOD pleased he would have 
permitted them to have prevailed against you, and they would have fought 
against you.  But if they depart from you, and fight not against you, and 
offer you peace, GOD doth not allow you to take or kill them.
     Ye shall find others who are desirous to enter into confidence with you, 
and at the same time to preserve a confidence with their own people:a so often 
as they return to sedition, they shall be subverted therein; and if they 
depart not from you, and offer you peace, and restrain their hands from 
warring against you, take them and kill them wheresoever ye find them; over 
these have we granted you a manifest power.
     It is not lawful for a believer to kill a believer, unless it happen by 
mistake;b and whoso killeth a believer by mistake, the penalty shall be the 
freeing of a believer from slavery, and a fine to be paid to the family of the 
deceased,c unless they remit it as alms: and if the slain person be of a 
people at enmity with you, and be a true believer, the penalty shall be the 
freeing of a believer;d but if he be of a people in confederacy with you, a 
fine to be paid to his family, and the freeing of a believer.  And he who 
findeth not wherewith to do this shall fast two months consecutively as a 
penance enjoined from GOD; and GOD is knowing and wise.
     But whoso killeth a believer designedly, his reward shall be hell; he 
shall remain therein for ever;e and GOD shall be angry with him, and shall 
curse him, and shall prepare for him a great punishment.
     O true believers, when ye are on a march in defence of the true religion, 
justly discern such as ye shall happen to meet, and say not unto him who 
saluteth you, thou art not a true believer;f seeking the accidental goods of 
the present life;g for with GOD is much spoil.  Such have ye formerly been; 
but GOD hath been gracious unto you;h therefore make a just discernment, for 
GOD is well acquainted with that which ye do.

	y  The people here meant, say some, were the tribe of Khozāah, or, 
according to others, the Aslamians, whose chief, named Helāl Ebn Owaimar, 
agreed with Mohammed, when he set out against Mecca, to stand neuter; or, as 
others rather think, Banu Becr Ebn Zeid.1
	z  These, it is said, were the tribe of Modlaj, who came in to Mohammed, 
but would not be obliged to assist him in war.2
	a  The person hinted at here were the tribes of Asad and Ghatfān, or, as 
some say, Banu Abdaldār, who came to Medina and pretended to embrace 
Mohammedism, that they might be trusted by the Moslems, but when they 
returned, fell back to their old idolatry.3
	b  That is, by accident and without design.  This passage was revealed 
to decide the case of Ayāsh Ebn Abi Rabīa, the brother, by the mother's side, 
of Abu Jahl, who meeting Hareth Ebn Zeid on the road, and not knowing that he 
had embraced Mohammedism, slew him.4
	c  Which fine is to be distributed according to the laws of inheritances 
given in the beginning of this chapter.5
	d  And no fine shall be paid, because in such case his relations, being 
infidels and at open war with the Moslems, have no right to inherit what he 
	e  That is, unless he repent.  Others, however, understand not here an 
eternity of damnation (for it is the general doctrine of the Mohammedans that 
none who profess that faith shall continue in hell for ever), but only a long 
space of time.1
	f  On pretence that he only feigns to be a Moslem, that he might escape 
from you.  The commentators mention more instances than one of persons slain 
and plundered by Mohammed's men under this pretext, notwithstanding they 
declared themselves Moslems by repeating the usual form of words, and saluting 
them; for which reason this passage was revealed, to prevent such rash 
judgments for the future.
	g  That is, being willing to judge him an infidel, only that ye may kill 
and plunder him.
	h  viz., At your first profession of Islāmism, before ye had given any 
demonstrations of your sincerity and zeal therein.

	1  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.		2  Al Beidāwi.		3  Idem.	
	4  Idem.		5  Idem.
1  Idem.

     Those believers who sit still at home, not having any hurt,i and those 
who employ their fortunes and their persons for the religion of GOD, shall not 
be held equal.  GOD hath preferred those who employ their fortunes and their 
persons in that cause to a degree of honour above those who sit at home; GOD 
hath indeed promised every one paradise, but GOD hath preferred those who 
fight for the faith before those who sit still, by adding unto them a great 
     by degrees of honour conferred on them from him, and by granting them 
forgiveness and mercy; for GOD is indulgent and merciful.
     Moreover unto those whom the angels put to death, having injured their 
own souls,k the angels said, Of what religion were ye? they answered, We were 
weak in the earth.l  The angels replied, Was not GOD'S earth wide enough, that 
ye might fly therein to a place of refuge?m  Therefore their habitation shall 
be hell; and an evil journey shall it be thither:
100	except the weak among men, and women, and children, who were not able to 
find means, and were not directed in the way; these peradventure GOD will 
pardon, for GOD is ready to forgive, and gracious.
     Whosoever flieth from his country for the sake of GOD'S true religion, 
shall find in the earth many forced to do the same, and plenty of provisions.  
And whoever departeth from his house, and flieth unto GOD and his apostle, if 
death overtake him in the way,n GOD will be obliged to reward him, for GOD is 
gracious and merciful.
     When ye march to war in the earth, it shall be no crime in you if ye 
shorten your prayers, in case ye fear the infidels may attack you; for the 
infidels are your open enemy.

	i  i.e., Not being disabled from going to war by sickness, or other just 
impediment.  It is said that when the passage was first revealed there was no 
such exception therein, which occasioned Ebn Omm Mactūm, on his hearing it 
repeated, to object, And what though I be blind?  Whereupon Mohammed, falling 
into a kind of trance, which was succeeded by strong agitations, pretended he 
had received the divine direction to add these words to the text.2
	k  These were certain inhabitants of Mecca, who held with the hare and 
ran with the hounds, for though they embraced Mohammedism, yet they would not 
leave that city to join the prophet, as the rest of the Moslems did, but on 
the contrary went out with the idolaters, and were therefore slain with them 
at the battle of Bedr.3
	l  Being unable to fly, and compelled to follow the infidels to war.
	m  As they did who fled to Ethiopia and to Medina.
	n  This passage was revealed, says al Beidāwi, on account of Jondob Ebn 
Damra.  This person being sick, was, in his flight, carried by his sons on a 
couch, and before he arrived at Medina, perceiving his end approached, he 
clapped his right hand on his left, and solemnly plighting his faith to GOD 
and his apostle, died.
	o  To defend those who are at prayers, and to face the enemy.

			2  Al Beidāwi.		3  Idem, Jallalo'ddin

     But when thou, O prophet, shalt be among them, and shalt pray with them, 
let a party of them arise to prayer with thee, and let them take their arms; 
and when they shall have worshipped, let them stand behind you,o and let 
another party come that hath not prayed, and let them pray with thee, and let 
them be cautious and take their arms.  The unbelievers would that ye should 
neglect your arms and your baggage while ye pray, that they might turn upon 
you at once.  It shall be no crime in you, if ye be incommoded by rain, or be 
sick, that ye lay down your arms; but take your necessary precaution:p GOD 
hath prepared for the unbelievers an ignominious punishment.
     And when ye shall have ended your prayer, remember GOD, standing, and 
sitting, and lying on your sides.q  But when ye are secure from danger, 
complete your prayers: for prayer is commanded the faithful, and appointed to 
be said at the stated times.
     Be not negligent in seeking out the unbelieving people, though ye suffer 
some inconvenience; for they also shall suffer as ye suffer, and ye hope for a 
reward from GOD which they cannot hope for; and GOD is knowing and wise.r
     We have sent down unto thee the book of the Koran with truth, that thou 
mayest judge between men through that wisdom which GOD showeth thee therein; 
and be not an advocate for the fraudulent;s but ask pardon of GOD for thy 
wrong intention, since GOD is indulgent and merciful.
     Dispute not for those who deceive one another, for GOD loveth not him who 
is a deceiver or unjust.t
     Such conceal themselves from men, but they conceal not themselves from 
GOD; for he is with them when they imagine by night a saying which pleaseth 
him not,u and GOD comprehendeth what they do.
     Behold, ye are they who have disputed for them in this present life; but 
who shall dispute with GOD for them on the day of resurrection, or who will 
become their patron?
110	yet he who doth evil, or injureth his own soul, and afterwards asketh 
pardon of God, shall find God gracious and merciful.
     Whoso committeth wickedness, committeth it against his own soul: GOD is 
knowing and wise.
     And whoso committeth a sin or iniquity, and afterwards layeth it on the 
innocent, he shall surely bear the guilt of calumny and manifest injustice.
     If the indulgence and mercy of GOD had not been upon thee, surely a part 
of them had studied to seduce thee;x but they shall seduce themselves only, 
and shall not hurt thee at all.  GOD hath sent down unto thee the book of the 
Koran and wisdom, and hath taught thee that which thou knewest not;y for the 
favor of GOD hath been great towards thee.
     There is no good in the multitude of their private discourses, unless in 
the discourse of him who recommendeth alms, or that which is right, or 
agreement amongst men: whoever doth this out of a desire to please GOD, we 
will surely give him a great reward.

	p  By keeping strict guard.
	q  That is, in such posture as ye shall be able.1
	r  This verse was revealed on occasion of the unwillingness of 
Mohammed's men to accompany him in the lesser expedition of Bedr.2
	s  Tima Ebn Obeirak, of the sons of Dhafar, one of Mohammed's 
companions, stole a coat of mail from his neighbour, Kitāda Ebn al Nomān, in a 
bag of meal, and hid it at a Jew's named Zeid Ebn al Samīn; Tima, being 
suspected, the coat of mail was demanded of him, but he denying he knew 
anything of it, they followed the track of the meal, which had run out through 
a hole in the bag, to the Jew's house, and there seized it, accusing him of 
the theft; but he producing witnesses of his own religion that he had it of 
Tima, the sons of Dhafar came to Mohammed and desired him to defend his 
companion's reputation, and condemn the Jew; which he having some thoughts of 
doing, this passage was revealed, reprehending him for his rash intention, and 
commanding him to judge not according to his own prejudice and opinion, but 
according to the merit of the case.3
	t  Al Beidāwi, as an instance of the divine justice, adds, that Tima, 
after the fact above mentioned, fled to Mecca, and returned to idolatry; and 
there undermining the wall of a house, in order to commit a robbery, the wall 
fell in upon him and crushed him to death.
	u  That is, when they secretly contrive means, by false evidence or 
otherwise, to lay their crimes on innocent persons.
	x  Meaning the sons of Dhafar.
	y  By instructing them in the knowledge of right and wrong, and the 
rules of justice.

	1  See before, c. 3, p. 52.		2  Al Beidāwi.		3  Idem, 
Jallalo'ddin, Yahya.

     But whoso separateth himself from the apostle, after true direction hath 
been manifested unto him, and followeth any other way than than of the true 
believers, we will cause him to obtain that to which he is inclined,z and will 
cast him to be burned in hell; and an unhappy journey shall it be thither.
     Verily GOD will not pardon the giving him a companion, but he will pardon 
any crime besides that, unto whom he pleaseth: and he who giveth a companion 
unto GOD is surely led aside into a wide mistake;
     the infidels invoke beside him only female deities;a and only invoke 
rebellious Satan.
     GOD cursed him; and he said, Verily I will take of thy servants a part 
cut off from the rest,b and I will seduce them, and will insinuate vain 
desires into them, and I will command them and they shall cut off the ears of 
cattle;c and I will command them and they shall change GOD'S creature.d  But 
whoever taketh Satan for his patron, besides GOD,e shall surely perish with a 
manifest destruction.
     He maketh them promises, and insinuateth into them vain desires; yet 
Satan maketh them only deceitful promises.
120	The receptacle of these shall be hell, they shall find no refuge from 
     But they who believe, and do good works, we will surely lead them into 
gardens, through which rivers flow, they shall continue therein forever, 
according to the true promise of GOD; and who is more true than GOD in what he 
     It shall not be according to your desires, nor according to the desires 
of those who have received the scriptures.f  Whoso doth evil shall be rewarded 
for it; and shall not find any patron or helper, beside GOD;
     but whoso doth good works, whether he be male or female, and is a true 
believer, they shall be admitted into paradise, and shall not in the least be 
unjustly dealt with.
     Who is better in point of religion than he who resigneth himself unto 
GOD, and is a worker of righteousness, and followeth the law of Abraham the 
orthodox?  since GOD took Abraham for his friend:g
     and to God belongeth whatsoever is in heaven and on earth; GOD 
comprehendeth all things.

	z  viz., Error, and false notions of religion.
	a  Namely, Allāt, al Uzza, and Menāt, the idols of the Meccans; or the 
angels, whom they called the daughters of GOD.4
	b  Or, as the original may be translated, a part destined or 
predetermined to be seduced by me.
	c  Which was done out of superstition by the old pagan Arabs.  Some more 
of this custom in the notes to the fifth chapter.
	d  Either by maiming it, or putting it to uses not designed by the 
Creator.  Al Beidāwi supposes the text to intend not only the superstitious 
amputations of the ears and other parts of cattle, but the castration of 
slaves, the marking their bodies with figures, by pricking and dyeing them 
with wood or indigo (as the Arabs did and still do), the sharpening their 
teeth by filing; and also sodomy, and the unnatural amours between those of 
the female sex, the worship of the sun, moon, and other parts of nature, and 
the like.
	e  i.e., By leaving the service of GOD, and doing the works of the 
	f  That is, the promises of GOD are not to be gained by acting after 
your own fancies, nor yet after the fancies of the Jews or Christians, but by 
obeying the commands of GOD.  This passage, they say, was revealed on a 
dispute which arose between those of the three religions, each preferring his 
own, and condemning the others.  Some, however, suppose the persons here 
spoken to in the second person were not the Mohammedans, but the idolaters.1
	g  Therefore the Mohammedans usually call that patriarch, as the 
scripture also does, Khalīl Allah, the Friend of God, and simply al Khalīl; 
and they tell the following story: That Abraham in a time of dearth sent to a 
friend of his in Egypt for a supply of corn; but the friend denied him, saying 
in his excuse, that though there was a famine in their country also, yet had 
it been for Abraham's own family, he would have sent what he desired, but he 
knew he wanted it only to entertain his guests and give away to the poor, 
according to his usual hospitality.  The servants whom Abraham had sent on 
this message, being ashamed to return empty, to conceal the matter from their 
neighbours, filled their sacks with fine white sand, which in the east pretty 
much resembles meal.  Abraham being informed by his servants, on their return 
of their ill success, the concern he was under threw him into a sleep; and in 
the meantime Sarah, knowing nothing of what had happened, opening one of the 
sacks, found good flour in it, and immediately set out about making of bread.  
Abraham awaking and smelling the new bread, asked her whence she had the 
flour?  Why, says she, from your friend in Egypt.  Nay, replied the Patriarch, 
it must have come from no other than my friend GOD Almighty.2

	4  See the Prelim. Discourse, Sect. I.		1  Al Beidāwi, 
Jallalo'ddin, Yahya,

     They will consult thee concerning women;h Answer, GOD instructeth you 
concerning them,i and that which is read unto you in the book of the Koran 
concerning female orphans, to whom ye give not that which is ordained them, 
neither will ye marry them,k and concerning weak infants,l and that ye observe 
justice towards orphans: whatever good ye do, GOD knoweth it.
     If a woman fear ill usage, or aversion from her husband, it shall be no 
crime in them if they agree the matter amicably between themselves;m for a 
reconciliation is better than a separation.  Men's souls are naturally 
inclined to covetousness:n but if ye be kind towards women, and fear to wrong 
them, GOD is well acquainted with what ye do.
     Ye can by no means carry yourselves equally between women in all 
respects, although ye study to do it; therefore turn not from a wife with all 
manner of aversion,o nor leave her like one in suspense:p if ye agree, and 
fear to abuse your wives, GOD is gracious and merciful;
     but if they separate, GOD will satisfy them both of his abundance;q for 
GOD is extensive and wise,
130	and unto GOD belongeth whatsoever is in heaven and on earth.  We have 
already commanded those unto whom the scriptures were given before you, and we 
command you also, saying, Fear GOD; but if ye disbelieve, unto GOD belongeth 
whatsoever is in heaven and on earth; and GOD is self-sufficient,r and to be 
     for unto GOD belongeth whatsoever is in heaven and on earth, and GOD is a 
sufficient protector.
     If he pleaseth he will take you away, O men, and will produce others in 
your stead;s for GOD is able to do this.
     Whoso desireth the reward of this world, verily with GOD is the reward of 
this world, and also of that which is to come; GOD both heareth and seeth.

	h  i.e., As to the share they are to have in the distribution of the 
inheritances of their deceased relations; for it seems that the Arabs were not 
satisfied with Mohammed's decision on this point, against the old customs.
	i  i.e., He hath already made his will known unto you, by revealing the 
passages concerning inheritances in the beginning of this chapter.
	k  Or the words may be rendered in the affirmative, and whom ye desire 
to marry.  For the pagan Arabs used to wrong their female orphans in both 
instances; obliging them to marry against their inclinations, if they were 
beautiful or rich; or else not suffering them to marry at all, that they might 
keep what belonged to them.3
	l  That is, male children of tender years, to whom the Arabs, in the 
time of paganism, used to allow no share in the distribution of their parents' 
	m  By the wife's remitting part of her dower or other dues.
	n  So that the woman, on the one side, is unwilling to part with any of 
her right; and the husband, on the other, cares not to retain one he has no 
affection for; or, if he should retain her, she can scarce expect he will use 
her in all respects as he ought.1
	o  i.e., Though you cannot use her equally well with a beloved wife, yet 
observe some measures of justice towards her; for if a man is not able 
perfectly to perform his duty, he ought not, for that reason, entirely to 
neglect it.2
	p  Or like one that neither has a husband, nor is divorced, and at 
liberty to marry elsewhere.
	q  That is, either will bless them with a better and more advantageous 
match, or with peace and tranquility of mind.3
	r  Wanting the service of no creature.
	s  i.e., Either another race of men or a different species of creatures.

	2  Al Beidāwi.  See D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 14, and Morgan's 
Mahometism Explained, vol. i. p. 132.		3  Al Beidāwi.
4  See before, p. 54, note c.		1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem.	
	3  Idem.

     O true believers, observe justice when ye bear witness before GOD, 
although it be against yourselves, or your parents, or relations; whether the 
party be rich, or whether he be poor; for GOD is more worthy than them both: 
therefore follow not your own lust in bearing testimony so that ye swerve from 
justice.  And whether ye wrest your evidence, or decline giving it, GOD is 
well acquainted with that which ye do.
     O true believers, believe in GOD and his apostle, and the book which he 
hath caused to descend unto his apostle, and the book which he hath formerly 
sent down.t  And whosoever believeth not in GOD, and his angels, and his 
scriptures, and his apostles, and the last day, he surely erreth in a wide 
     Moreover they who believed, and afterwards became infidels, and then 
believed again, and after that disbelieved, and increased in infidelity,u GOD 
will by no means forgive them, nor direct them into the right way.
     Declare unto the ungodlyx that they shall suffer a painful punishment.
     They who take the unbelievers for their protectors, besides the faithful, 
do they seek for power with them? since all power belongeth unto GOD.
     And he hath already revealed unto you, in the book of the Korān,y the 
following passage-When ye shall hear the signs of GOD, they shall not be 
believed, but they shall be laughed to scorn.  Therefore sit not with them who 
believe not, until they engage in different discourse; for if ye do ye will 
certainly become like unto them.  GOD will surely gather the ungodly and the 
unbelievers together in hell.
140	They who wait to observe what befalleth you, if victory be granted you 
from GOD, say, Were we not with you?z  But if any advantage happen to the 
infidels, they say unto them, Were we not superior to you,a and have we not 
defended you against the believers?  GOD shall judge between you on the day of 
resurrection: and GOD will not grant the unbelievers means to prevail over the 
     The hypocrites act deceitfully with GOD, but he will deceive them; and 
when they stand up to pray, they stand carelessly, affecting to be seen of 
men, and remember not GOD, unless a little,b
     wavering between faith and infidelity, and adhering neither unto these 
nor unto those:c and for him whom GOD shall lead astray thou shalt find no 
true path.
     O true believers, take not the unbelievers for your protectors besides 
the faithful.  Will ye furnish GOD with an evident argument of impiety against 

	t  It is said that Abda'llah Ebn Salām and his companions told Mohammed 
that they believed in him, and his Korān, and in Moses, and the Pentateuch, 
and in Ezra, but no farther; whereupon this passage was revealed, declaring 
that a partial faith is little better than none at all, and that a true 
believer must believe in all GOD'S prophets and revelations without 
	u  These were the Jews, who first believed in Moses, and afterwards fell 
into idolatry by worshiping the golden calf; and though they repented of that, 
yet in after ages rejected the prophets who were sent to them, and 
particularly Jesus, the son of Mary, and now filled up the measure of their 
unbelief by rejecting of Mohammed.5
	x  Mohammed here means those who hypocritically pretended to believe in 
him but really did not, and by their treachery did great mischief to his 
	y  Cap. 6.
	z  i.e., Did we not assist you?  Therefore give us part of the spoil.2
	a  Would not our army have cut you off if it had not been for our faint 
assistance, or rather desertion, of the Moslems, and our disheartening them?3
	b  That is, with the tongue, and not with the heart.
	c  Halting between two opinions, and being staunch friends neither to 
the Moslems nor the infidels.

	4  Al Beidāwi.		5  Idem.		1  Idem.		2.  Idem.	
	3  Idem.

     Moreover the hypocrites shall be in the lowest bottom of hell fire,d and 
thou shalt not find any to help them thence.
     But they who repent and amend, and adhere firmly unto GOD, and approve 
the sincerity of their religion to GOD, they shall be numbered with the 
faithful; and GOD will surely give the faithful a great reward.
     And how should GOD go about to punish you, if ye be thankful and believe? 
for GOD is grateful and wise.
     GOD loveth not the speaking ill of any one in public, unless he who is 
injured call for assistance; and GOD heareth and knoweth:
     whether ye publish a good action, or conceal it, or forgive evil, verily 
GOD is gracious and powerful.
     They who believe not in GOD, and his apostles, and would make a 
distinction between GOD and his apostles,e and say, We believe in some of the 
prophets and reject others of them, and seek to take a middle way in this 
150	these are really unbelievers: and we have prepared for the unbelievers 
an ignominious punishment.
     But they who believe in GOD and his apostles, and make no distinction 
between any of them, unto those will we surely give their reward; and GOD is 
gracious and merciful.
     They who have received the scripturesf will demand of thee, that thou 
cause a book to descend unto them from heaven: they formerly asked of Moses a 
greater thing than this: for they said, Show us GOD visibly.g  Wherefore a 
storm of fire from heaven destroyed them, because of their iniquity.  Then 
they took the calf for their God,h after that evident proofs of the divine 
unity had come unto them: but we forgave them that, and gave Moses a manifest 
power to punish them.i
     And we lifted the mountain of Sinai over them,k when we exacted from them 
their covenant; and said unto them, Enter the gate of the city worshipping.l  
We also said unto them, Transgress not on the Sabbath-day.  And we received 
from them a firm covenant, that they would observe these things.
     Therefore for thatm they have made void their covenant, and have not 
believed in the signs of GOD, and have slain the prophets unjustly, and have 
said, Our hearts are circumcised; (but GOD hath sealed them up, because of 
their unbelief; therefore they shall not believe, except a few of them:)
     and for that they have not believed in Jesus, and have spoken against 
Mary a grievous calumny;n

	d  See the Preliminary Discourse, Sect. IV.
	e  See c. 2, p. 31, note h.
	f  That is, the Jews; who demanded of Mohammed, as a proof of his 
mission, that they might see a book of revelations descend to him from heaven, 
or that he would produce one written in a celestial character, like the two 
tables of Moses.
	g  See chapter 2, p. 6.
	This story seems to be an addition to what Moses says of the seventy 
elders, who went up to the mountain with him, and with Aaron, Nadab, and 
Abihu, and saw the GOD of Israel.1
	h  See chapter 2, p. 6.
	i  See ibid. p. 6, note m.
	k  See ibid. p. 8.
	l  See ibid. p. 7.
	m  There being nothing in the following words of this sentence, to 
answer to the causal for that, Jallalo'ddin supposes something to be 
understood to complete the sense, as therefore we have cursed them, or the 
	n  By accusing her of fornication.2

	1  Exod. xxiv. 9, 10, 11.		2  See the Kor. c. 19, and that 
virulent book entitled Toldoth Jesu.

     and have said, Verily we have slain Christ Jesus the son of Mary, the 
apostle of GOD; yet they slew him not, neither crucified him, but he was 
represented by one in his likeness;o and verily they who disagreed concerning 
himp were in a doubt as to this matter, and had no sure knowledge thereof, but 
followed only an uncertain opinion.  They did not really kill him; but GOD 
took him up unto himself: and GOD is mighty and wise.
     And there shall not be one of those who have received the scriptures, who 
shall not believe in him, before his death;q and on the day of resurrection he 
shall be a witness against them.r
     Because of the iniquity of those who Judaize, we have forbidden them good 
things, which had been formerly allowed them;s
     and because they shut out many from the way of GOD, and have taken usury, 
which was forbidden them by the law, and devoured men's substance vainly: we 
have prepared for such of them as are unbelievers a painful punishment.
160	But those among them who are well grounded in knowledge,t and the 
faithful, who believe in that which hath been sent down unto thee, and that 
which hath been sent down unto the prophets before thee, and who observe the 
stated times of prayer, and give alms, and believe in GOD and the last day 
unto these will we give a great reward.
     Verily we have revealed our will unto thee, as we have revealed it unto 
Noah and the prophets who succeeded him; and as we revealed it unto Abraham, 
and Ismael, and Isaac, and Jacob, and the tribes, and unto Jesus, and Job, and 
Jonas, and Aaron, and Solomon; and we have given thee the Koran, as we gave 
the psalms unto David:
     some apostles have we sent, whom we have formerly mentioned unto thee; 
and other apostles have we sent, whom we have not mentioned unto thee; and GOD 
spake unto Moses, discoursing with him;
     apostles declaring good tidings, and denouncing threats, lest men should 
have an argument of excuse against GOD, after the apostles had been sent unto 
them; GOD is mighty and wise.
     GOD is witness of that revelation which he hath sent down unto thee; he 
sent it down with his special knowledge: the angels also are witnesses 
thereof; but GOD is a sufficient witness.
     They who believe not, and turn aside others from the way of GOD, have 
erred in a wide mistake.

	o  See chapter 3, p. 38, and the notes there.
	p  For some maintained that he was justly and really crucified; some 
insisted that it was not Jesus who suffered, but another who resembled him in 
the face, pretending the other parts of his body, by their unlikeness, plainly 
discovered the imposition; some said he was taken up into heaven; and others, 
that his manhood only suffered, and that his godhead ascended into heaven.3
	q  This passage is expounded two ways.
	Some, referring the relative his, to the first antecedent, take the 
meaning to be, that no Jew or Christian shall die before he believes in Jesus: 
for they say, that when one of either of those religions is ready to breathe 
his last, and sees the angel of death before him, he shall then believe in 
that prophet as he ought, though his faith will not then be of any avail.  
According to a tradition of Hejāj, when a Jew is expiring, the angels will 
strike him on the back and face, and say to him, O thou enemy of GOD, Jesus 
was sent as a prophet unto thee, and thou didst not believe on him; to which 
he will answer, I now believe him to be the servant of GOD; and to a dying 
Christian they will say, Jesus was sent as a prophet unto thee, and thou hast 
imagined him to be GOD, or the son of GOD; whereupon he will believe him to be 
the servant of GOD only, and his apostle.
	Others, taking the above-mentioned relative to refer to Jesus, suppose 
the intent of the passage to be, that all Jews and Christians in general shall 
have a right faith in that prophet before his death, that is, when he descends 
from heaven and returns into the world, where he is to kill Antichrist, and to 
establish the Mohammedan religion, and a most perfect tranquility and security 
on earth.1
	r  i.e., Against the Jews, for rejecting him; and against the 
Christians, for calling him GOD, and the son of GOD.2
	s  See chapter 3, p. 38 and 42, and the notes there.
	t  As Abda'llah Ebn Salām, and his companions.3

	3  Al Beidāwi.		1  Jallalo'ddin, Yahya, al Zamakhshari, and al 
Beidāwi.  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.		2  Al Beidāwi.		3  

     Verily those who believe not, and act unjustly, GOD will by no means 
forgive, neither will he direct them into any other way,
     than the way of hell; they shall remain therein forever: and this is easy 
with GOD.
     O men, now is the apostle come unto you, with truth from your LORD; 
believe therefore, it will be better for you.  But if ye disbelieve, verily 
unto GOD belongeth whatsoever is in heaven and on earth; and GOD is knowing 
and wise.
     O ye who have received the scriptures, exceed not the just bounds in your 
religion,u neither say of GOD any other than the truth.  Verily Christ Jesus 
the son of Mary is the apostle of GOD, and his Word, which he conveyed into 
Mary, and a spirit proceeding from him.  Believe therefore in GOD, and his 
apostles, and say not, There are  three Gods;x forbear this; it will be better 
for you.  GOD is but one GOD.  Far be it from him that he should have a son! 
unto him belongeth whatever is in heaven and on earth; and GOD is a sufficient 
170	Christ doth not proudly disdain to be a servant unto GOD; neither the 
angels who approach near to his presence:
     and whoso disdaineth his service, and is puffed up with pride, God will 
gather them all to himself, on the last day.
     Unto those who believe, and do that which is right, he shall give their 
rewards, and shall superabundantly add unto them of his liberality: but those 
who are disdainful and proud, he will punish with a grievous punishment;
     and they shall not find any to protect or to help them, besides GOD.
     O men, now is an evident proof come unto you from your LORD, and we have 
sent down unto you manifest light.y  They who believe in GOD and firmly adhere 
to him, he will lead them into mercy from him, and abundance; and he will 
direct them in the right way to himself.z
     They will consult thee for thy decision in certain cases; say unto them, 
GOD giveth you these determinations, concerning the more remote degrees of 
kindred.a  If a man die without issue, and have a sister, she shall have the 
half of what he shall leave:b and he shall be heir to her,c in case she have 
no issue.  But if there be two sisters they shall have between them two third 
parts of what he shall leave; and if there be several, both brothers and 
sisters, a male shall have as much as the portion of two females.  GOD 
declareth unto you these precepts, lest ye err: and GOD knoweth all things.

	u  Either by rejecting and contemning of Jesus as the Jews do; or 
raising him to an equality with GOD, as do the Christians.4
	x  Namely, God, Jesus, and Mary.1  For the eastern writers mention a 
sect of Christians which held the Trinity to be composed of those three;2 but 
it is allowed that this heresy has been long since extinct.3  The passage, 
however, is equally levelled against the Holy Trinity, according to the 
doctrine of the orthodox Christians, who, as al Beidāwi acknowledges, believe 
the divine nature to consist of three persons, the Father, the Son, and the 
Holy Ghost; by the Father understanding GOD'S essence; by the Son his 
knowledge, and by the Holy Ghost his life.
	y  That is, Mohammed and his Korān.
	z  viz., Into the religion of Islām, in this world, and the way to 
paradise in the next.4
	a  See the beginning of this chapter, p. 53.
	b  And the other half will go to the public treasury.
	c  That is, he shall inherit her whole substance.

	4  Al Beidāwi.		1  Idem, Jallalo'ddin, Yahya.		2  Elmacin. 
p. 227.  Eutych. p. 120.  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. II		3  Ahmed Ebn 
Abd'al Halim.		4  Al Beidāwi.




     O TRUE believers, perform your contracts.  Ye are allowed to eat the 
brute cattle,e other than what ye are commanded to abstain from; except the 
game which ye are allowed at other times, but not while ye are on pilgrimage 
to Mecca; GOD ordaineth that which he pleaseth.
     O true believers, violate not the holy rites of GOD,f nor the sacred 
month,g nor the offering, nor the ornaments hung thereon,h nor those who are 
travelling to the holy house, seeking favor from their LORD, and to please 
     But when ye shall have finished your pilgrimage; then hunt.  And let not 
the malice of some, in that they hindered you from entering the sacred 
temple,i provoke you to transgress, by taking revenge on them in the sacred 
months.  Assist one another according to justice and piety, but assist not one 
another in injustice and malice: therefore fear GOD; for GOD is severe in 
     Ye are forbidden to eat that which dieth of itself, and blood, and 
swine's flesh, and that on which the name of any besides GOD hath been 
invocated;k and that which hath been strangled, or killed by a blow, or by a 
fall, or by the horns of another beast, and that which hath been eaten by a 
wild beast,l except what ye shall kill yourselves;m and that which hath been 
sacrificed unto idols.n  It is likewise unlawful for you to make division by 
casting lots with arrows.o  This is an impiety.  On this day,p woe be unto 
those who have apostatized from their religion; therefore fear not them, but 
fear me.
     This day have I perfected your religion for you,q and have completed my 
mercy upon you;r and I have chosen for you Islam, to be your religion.  But 
whosoever shall be driven by necessity through hunger, to eat of what we have 
forbidden, not designing to sin, surely GOD will be indulgent and merciful 
unto him.

	d  The title is taken from the Table, which, towards the end of the 
chapter, is fabled to have been let down from heaven to Jesus.  It is 
sometimes also called the chapter of Contracts, which word occurs in the first 
	e  As camels, oxen, and sheep; and also wild cows, antelopes, &c.;1 but 
not swine, nor what is taken in hunting during the pilgrimage.
	f  i.e., The ceremonies used in the pilgrimage of Mecca.
	g  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. VII.
	h  The offering here meant is the sheep led to Mecca, to be there 
sacrificed, about the neck of which they used to hang garlands, green boughs, 
or some other ornament, that it may be distinguished as a thing sacred.2
	i  In the expedition of Al Hodeibiya.3
	k  For the idolatrous Arabs used, in killing any animal for food, to 
consecrate it, as it were, to their idols, by saying, In the name of Allāt, or 
al Uzza.4
	l  Or by a creature trained up to hunting.5
	m  That is, unless ye come up time enough to find life in the animal, 
and to cut its throat.
	n  The word also signifies certain stones, which the pagan Arabs used to 
set up near their houses, and on which they superstitiously slew animals, in 
honour of their gods.6
	o  See Prelim. Disc. Sect. V.
	p  This passage, it is said, was revealed on Friday evening, being the 
day of the pilgrims visiting Mount Arafat, the last time Mohammed visited the 
temple of Mecca, therefore called the pilgrimage of valediction.7
	q  And therefore the commentators say, that after this time, no positive 
or negative precept was given.1
	r  By having given you a true and perfect religion; or, by the taking of 
Mecca, and the destruction of idolatry.

	1  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.		2  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.	
	3  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. II.
4  See c. 2, p. 18.		5  Al Beidāwi.		6  Idem.		7  
Idem.  See Prid. Life of Mahom. p. 99.
1  Vide Abulfed. Vit. Moh. p. 131.

     They will ask thee what is allowed them as lawful to eat?  Answer, Such 
things as are goods are allowed you; and what ye shall teach animals of prey 
to catch,t training them up for hunting after the manner of dogs, and teaching 
them according to the skill which GOD hath taught you.  Eat therefore of that 
which they shall catch for you; and commemorate the name of GOD thereon;u and 
fear GOD, for GOD is swift in taking an account.
     This day are ye allowed to eat such things as are good, and the food of 
those to whom the scriptures were givenx is also allowed as lawful unto you; 
and your food is allowed as lawful unto them.  And ye are also allowed to 
marry free women that are believers, and also free women of those who have 
received the scriptures before you, when ye shall have assigned them their 
dower; living chastely with them, neither committing fornication, nor taking 
them for concubines.  Whoever shall renounce the faith, his work shall be 
vain, and in the next life he shall be of those who perish.
     O true believers, when ye prepare yourselves to pray, wash your faces, 
and your hands unto the elbows; and rub your heads, and your feet unto the 
     and if ye be polluted by having lain with a woman, wash yourselves all 
over.  But if ye be sick, or on a journey, or any of you cometh from the 
privy, or if ye have touched women, and ye find no water, take fine clean 
sand, and rub your faces and your hands therewith; GOD would not put a 
difficulty upon you; but he desireth to purify you, and to complete his favor 
upon you, that ye may give thanks.
10	Remember the favor of GOD towards you, and his covenant which he hath 
made with you, when ye said, We have heard, and will obey.y  Therefore fear 
God, for God knoweth the innermost parts of the breasts of men.
     O true believers, observe justice when ye appear as witnesses before GOD, 
and let not hatred towards any induce you to do wrong: but act justly; this 
will approach nearer unto piety; and fear GOD, for GOD is fully acquainted 
with what ye do.
     GOD hath promised unto those who believe, and do that which is right, 
that they shall receive pardon and a great reward.
     But they who believe not, and accuse our signs of falsehood, they shall 
be the companions of hell.
     O true believers, remember God's favor towards you, when certain men 
designed to stretch forth their hands against you, but he restrained their 
hands from hurting you;z therefore fear GOD and in GOD let the faithful trust.

	s  Not such as are filthy, or unwholesome.
	t  Whether beasts or birds.
	u  Either when ye let go the hound, hawk, or other animal, after the 
game; or when ye kill it.
	x  viz., Slain or dressed by Jews or Christians.
	y  These words are the form used at the inauguration of a prince; and 
Mohammed here intends the oath of fidelity which his followers had taken to 
him at al Akaba.2
	z  The commentators tell several stories as the occasion of this 
passage.  One says, that Mohammed and some of his followers being at Osfān (a 
place not far from Mecca, in the way to Medina), and performing their noon 
devotions, a company of idolaters, who were in view, repented they had not 
taken that opportunity of attacking them, and therefore waited till the hour 
of evening prayer, intending to fall upon them then: but GOD defeated their 
design, by revealing the verse of fear.  Another relates, that the prophet 
going to the tribe of Koreidha (who were Jews) to levy a fine for the blood of 
two Moslems, who had been killed by mistake, by Amru Ebn Ommeya al Dimri, they 
desired him to sit down and eat with them, and they would pay the fine; 
Mohammed complying with their request, while he was sitting, they laid a 
design against his life, one Amru Ebn Jahāsh undertaking to throw a millstone 
upon him; but GOD withheld his hand, and Gabriel immediately descended to 
acquaint the prophet with their treachery, upon which he rose up and went his 
way.  A third story is, that Mohammed having hung up his arms on a tree, under 
which he was resting himself, and his companions being dispersed some distance 
from him, an Arab of the desert came up to him and drew his sword, saying, Who 
hindereth me from killing thee? To which Mohammed answered, GOD; and Gabriel 
beating the sword out of the Arab's hand, Mohammed took it up, and asked him 
the same question, Who hinders me from killing thee? the Arab replied, nobody, 
and immediately professed Mohammedism.1  Abūlfeda2 tells the same story, with 
some variation of circumstances.

	2  Vide Abulfed. ibid. p. 43, and the Prelim. Disc. Sect. II.	
	1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Vit. Moh. p. 73.

     GOD formerly accepted the covenant of the children of Israel, and we 
appointed out of them twelve leaders: and GOD said, Verily I am with you:a if 
ye observe prayer, and give alms, and believe in my apostles, and assist them, 
and lend unto GOD on good usury,b I will surely expiate your evil deeds from 
you, and I will lead you into gardens, wherein rivers flow: but he among you 
who disbelieveth after this, erreth from the straight path.
     Wherefore because they have broken their covenant, we have cursed them, 
and hardened their hearts; they dislocate the words of the Pentateuch from 
their places, and have forgotten part of what they were admonished; and thou 
wilt not cease to discover deceitful practices among them, except a few of 
them.  But forgive them,c and pardon them, for GOD loveth the beneficent.
     And from those who say, We are Christians, we have received their 
covenant; but they have forgotten part of what they were admonished; wherefore 
we have raised up enmity and hatred among them, till the day of resurrection; 
and GOD will then surely declare unto them what they have been doing.
     O ye who have received the scriptures, now is our apostle come unto you, 
to make manifest unto you many things which ye concealed in the scriptures;d 
and to pass overe many things.  Now is light and a perspicuous book of 
revelations come unto you from God.  Thereby will GOD direct him who shall 
follow his good pleasure, into the paths of peace; and shall lead them out of 
darkness into light, by his will, and shall direct them in the right way.
     They are infidels, who say, Verily GOD is Christ the son of Mary.  Say 
unto them, And who could obtain anything from GOD to the contrary, if he 
pleased to destroy Christ the son of Mary, and his mother, and all those who 
are on the earth?
20	For unto GOD belongeth the kingdom of heaven and earth, and whatsoever 
is contained between them; he createth what he pleaseth, and GOD is almighty.

	a  After the Israelites had escaped from Pharaoh, GOD ordered them to go 
against Jericho, which was then inhabited by giants, of the race of the 
Canaanites, promising to give it into their hands; and Moses, by the divine 
direction, appointed a prince or captain over each tribe, to lead them in that 
expedition,3 and when they came to the borders of the land of Canaan, sent the 
captains as spies to get information of the state of the country, enjoining 
them secresy; but they being terrified at the prodigious size and strength of 
the inhabitants, disheartened the people by publicly telling them what they 
had seen, except only Caleb the son of Yufanna (Jephunneh) and Joshua the son 
of Nun.4
	b  By contributing towards this holy war.
	c  That is, if they repent and believe, or submit to pay tribute.  Some, 
however, think these words are abrogated by the verse of the sword.5
	d  Such as the verse of stoning adulterers,6 the description of 
Mohammed, and Christ's prophecy of him by the name of Ahmed.7
	e  i.e., Those which it was not necessary to restore.

	3  See Numb. i. 4. 5.		4  Al Beidāwi.  Numb. xiii. and xiv	
	5  Al Beidāwi.		6  See c. 3, p. 34.
7  Al Beidāwi.

     The Jews and the Christians say, We are the children of GOD and his 
beloved.  Answer, Why therefore doth he punish you for your sins?  Nay, but ye 
are men, of those whom he hath created.  He forgiveth whom he pleaseth, and 
punisheth whom he pleaseth; and unto GOD belongeth the kingdom of heaven and 
earth, and of what is contained between them both; and unto him shall all 
things return.
     O ye who have received the scriptures, now is our apostle come unto you, 
declaring unto you the true religion, during the cessation of apostles,f lest 
ye should say, There came unto us no bearer of good tidings, nor any warner: 
but now is a bearer of good tidings, and a warner come unto you; for GOD is 
     Call to mind when Moses said unto his people, O my people, remember the 
favor of GOD towards you, since he hath appointed prophets among you, and 
constituted you kings,g and bestowed on you what he hath given to no other 
nation in the world.h
     O my people, enter the holy land, which GOD hath decreed you, and turn 
not your backs, lest ye be subverted and perish.
     They answered, O Moses, verily there are a gigantic people in the land;i 
and we will by no means enter it, until they depart thence; but if they depart 
thence, then will we enter therein.
     And two menk of those who feared GOD, unto whom GOD had been gracious, 
said, Enter ye upon them suddenly by the gate of the city;  and when ye shall 
have entered the same, ye shall surely be victorious: therefore trust in GOD, 
if ye are true believers.
     They replied, O Moses, we will never enter the land, while they remain 
therein: go therefore thou, and thy LORD, and fight; for we will sit here.
     Moses said, O LORD, surely I am not master of any except myself, and my 
brother; therefore make a distinction between us and the ungodly people.
     GOD answered, Verily the land shall be forbidden them forty years; during 
which time they shall wander like men astonished on the earth;l therefore be 
not thou solicitous for the ungodly people.

	f  The Arabic word al Fatra signifies the intermediate space of time 
between two prophets, during which no new revelation or dispensation was 
given; as the interval between Moses and Jesus, and between Jesus and 
Mohammed, at the expiration of which last, Mohammed pretended to be sent.
	g  This was fulfilled either by GOD'S giving them a kingdom, and a long 
series of princes; or by his having made them kings or masters of themselves, 
by delivering them from the Egyptian bondage.
	h  Having divided the Red Sea for you, and guided you by a cloud, and 
fed you with quails and manna, &c.1
	i  The largest of these giants, the commentators say, was Og, the son of 
Anak; concerning whose enormous stature, his escaping the Flood, and the 
manner of his being slain by Moses, the Mohammedans relate several absurd 
	k  Namely, Caleb and Joshua.
	l  The commentators pretend that the Israelites, while they thus 
wandered in the desert, were kept within the compass of about eighteen (or as 
some say twenty-seven) miles; and that though they travelled from morning to 
night, yet they constantly found themselves the next day at the place from 
whence they set out.1

	1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Vide Marraacc. in Alcor. p. 231, &c.  
D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 336.		1  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.

30	Relate unto them also the history of the two sons of Adam,m with truth.  
When they offeredn their offering, and it was accepted from one of them,o and 
was not accepted from the other, Cain said to his brother, I will certainly 
kill thee.  Abel answered, GOD only accepteth the offering of the pious;
     if thou stretchest forth thy hand against me, to slay me, I will not 
stretch forth my hand against thee, to slay thee; for I fear GOD, the LORD of 
all creatures.p
     I choose that thou shouldest bear my iniquity and thine own iniquity; and 
that thou become a companion of hell fire; for that is the reward of the 
     But his soul suffered him to slay his brother, and he slew him;r 
wherefore he became of the number of those who perish.
     And GOD sent a raven, which scratched the earth, to show him how he 
should hide the shame of his brother,s and he said, Woe is me! am I unable to 
be like this raven, that I may hide my brother's shame? and he became one of 
those who repent.
     Wherefore we commanded the children of Israel, that he who slayeth a 
soul, without having slain a soul, or committed wickedness in the earth,t 
shall be as if he had slain all mankind:u but he who saveth a soul alive, 
shall be as if he had saved the lives of all mankind.
     Our apostles formerly came unto them, with evident miracles; then were 
many of them after this, transgressors on the earth.
     But the recompense of those who fight against GOD and his apostle, and 
study to act corruptly in the earth, shall be, that they shall be slain, or 
crucified, or have their hands and their feet cut off on the opposite sides, 
or be banished the land.x  This shall be their disgrace in this world, and in 
the  next world they shall suffer a grievous punishment;
     except those who shall repent, before ye prevail against them; for know 
that GOD is inclined to forgive, and merciful.

	m  viz., Cain and Abel, whom the Mohammedans call Kābil and Hābil.
	n  The occasion of their making this offering is thus related, according 
to the common tradition in the east.2  Each of them being born with a twin 
sister, when they were grown up, Adam, by God's direction, ordered Cain to 
marry Abel's twin sister, and that Abel should marry Cain's (for it being the 
common opinion that marriages ought not to be had in the nearest degrees of 
consanguinity, since they must necessarily marry their sisters, it seemed 
reasonable to suppose they ought to take those of the remoter degree), but 
this Cain refusing to agree to, because his own sister was the handsomest, 
Adam ordered them to make their offerings to GOD, thereby referring the 
dispute to his determination.3  The commentators say Cain's offering was a 
sheaf of the very worst of his corn, but Abel's a fat lamb, of the best of his 
	o  Namely, from Abel, whose sacrifice GOD declared his acceptance of in 
a visible manner, by causing fire to descend from heaven and consume it, 
without touching that of Cain.4
	p  To enhance Abel's patience, al Beidāwi tells us, that he was the 
stronger of the two, and could easily have prevailed against his brother.
	q  The conversation between the two brothers is related somewhat to the 
same purpose in the Jerusalem Targum and that of Jonathan ben Uzziel.
	r  Some say he knocked out his brains with a stone;5 and pretend that as 
Cain was considering which way he should effect the murder, the devil appeared 
to him in a human shape, and showed him how to do it, by crushing the head of 
a bird between two stones.6
	s  i.e., His dead corpse.  For Cain, having committed this fratricide, 
became exceedingly troubled in his mind, and carried the dead body about on 
his shoulders for a considerable time, not knowing where to conceal it, till 
it stank horridly; and then God taught him to bury it by the example of a 
raven, who having killed another raven in his presence, dug a pit with his 
claws and beak, and buried him therein.7  For this circumstance of the raven 
Mohammed was beholden to the Jews, who tell the same story, except only that 
they make the raven to appear to Adam, and that he thereupon buried his son.8
	t  Such as idolatry, or robbing on the highway.1
	u  Having broken the commandment which forbids the shedding of blood.
	x  The lawyers are not agreed as to the applying of these punishments.  
But the commentators suppose that they who commit murder only are to be put to 
death in the ordinary way; those who murder and rob too, to be crucified; 
those who rob without committing murder, to have their right hand and their 
left foot cut off; and they who assault persons and put them in fear, to be 
banished.2  It is also a doubt whether they who are to be crucified shall be 
crucified alive, or be first put to death, or whether they shall hang on the 
cross till they die.3

	2  Vide Abulfarag, p. 6, 7; Eutych. Annal. p. 15, 16; and D'Herbelot, 
Bibl. Orient. Art. Cabil.		3  Al Beidāwi.
4  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.		5  Vide Eutych. ubi supra.		6  Vide 
D'Herbelot, ubi sup.		7  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.
8  Vide R. Eliezer, Pirke, c. 20.		1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem, 
Jallalo'ddin.		3  Al Beidāwi.

     O true believers, fear GOD, and earnestly desire a near conjunction with 
him, and fight for his religion, that ye may be happy.
40	Moreover they who believe not, although they had whatever is in the 
earth, and as much more withal, that they might therewith redeem themselves 
from punishment on the day of resurrection; it shall not be accepted from 
them, but they shall suffer a painful punishment.
     They shall desire to go forth from the fire, but they shall not go forth 
from it, and their punishment shall be permanent.
     If a man or a woman steal, cut off their hands,y in retribution for that 
which they have committed; this is an exemplary punishment appointed by GOD; 
and GOD is mighty and wise.
     But whoever shall repent after his iniquity, and amend, verily GOD will 
be turned unto him,z for GOD is inclined to forgive, and merciful.
     Dost thou not know that the kingdom of heaven and earth is GOD'S?  He 
punisheth whom he pleaseth, and he pardoneth whom he pleaseth; for GOD is 
     O apostle, let not them grieve thee, who hasten to infidelity,a either of 
those who say, We believe, with their mouths, but whose hearts believe not;b 
or of the Jews, who hearken to a lie, and hearken to other people;c who come 
unto thee: they pervert the words of the law from their true places,d and say, 
If this be brought unto you, receive it; but if it be not brought unto you, 
beware of receiving aught else;e and in behalf of him whom GOD shall resolve 
to seduce, thou shalt not prevail with GOD at all.  They whose hearts GOD 
shall not please to cleanse shall suffer shame in this world, and a grievous 
punishment in the next:
     who hearken to a lie, and eat that which is forbidden.f  But if they come 
unto thee for judgment, either judge between them, or leave them;g and if thou 
leave them, they shall not hurt thee at all.  But if thou undertake to judge, 
judge between them with equity; for GOD loveth those who observe justice.

	y  But this punishment, according to the Sonna, is not to be inflicted, 
unless the value of the thing stolen amount to four dinārs, or about forty 
shillings.  For the first offence, the criminal is to lose his right hand, 
which is to be cut off at the wrist; for the second offence, his left foot, at 
the ankle; for the third, his left hand; for the fourth, his right foot; and 
if he continue to offend, he shall be scourged at the discretion of the 
	z  That is, GOD will not punish him for it hereafter; but his repentance 
does not supersede the execution of the law here, nor excuse him from making 
restitution.  Yet, according to al Shāfeļ, he shall not be punished if the 
party wronged forgive him before he be carried before a magistrate.5
	a  i.e., Who take the first opportunity to throw off the mask, and join 
the unbelievers.
	b  viz., The hypocritical Mohammedans.
	c  These words are capable of two senses; and may either mean that they 
attended to the lies and forgeries of their Rabbins, neglecting the 
remonstrances of Mohammed; or else, that they came to hear Mohammed as spies 
only, that they might report what he said to their companions, and represent 
him as a liar.1
	d  See chapter 4, p. 59, note e.
	e  That is, if what Mohammed tells you agrees with scripture, as 
corrupted and dislocated by us, then you may accept it as the word of GOD; but 
if not, reject it.  These words, it is said, relate to the sentence pronounced 
by that prophet on an adulterer and an adulteress,2 both persons of some 
figure among the Jews.  For they, it seems, though they referred the matter to 
Mohammed, yet directed the persons who carried the criminals before him, that 
if he ordered them to be scourged, and to have their faces blackened (by way 
of ignominy), they should acquiesce in his determination; but in case he 
condemned them to be stoned, they should not.  And Mohammed pronouncing the 
latter sentence against them, they refused to execute it, till Ebn Sūriya (a 
Jew), who was called upon to decide the matter, acknowledged the law to be so-
whereupon they were stoned at the door of the mosque.3
	f  Some understand this of unlawful meats; but others of taking or 
devouring, as it is expressed, of usury and bribes.4
	g  i.e., Take thy choice, whether thou wilt determine their differences 
or not.  Hence al Shāfeļ was of opinion that a judge was not obliged to decide 
causes between Jews or Christians; though if one or both of them be 
tributaries, or under the protection of the Mohammedans, they are obliged: 
this verse not regarding them.  Abu Hanīfa, however, thought that the 
magistrates were obliged to judge all cases which were submitted to them.6

	4  Jallalo'ddin, Al Beidāwi.		5  Idem.		1  Al Beidāwi.	
	2  See c. 3, p. 34, note r
3  Al Beidāwi.		4  Idem.		6  Idem.

     And how will they submit to thy decision, since they have the law, 
containing the judgment of GOD?h Then will they turn their backs, after this;i 
but those are not true believers.k
     We have surely sent down the law, containing direction, and light: 
thereby did the prophets, who professed the true religion, judge those who 
judaized; and the doctors and priests also judged by the book of GOD, which 
had been committed to their custody; and they were witnesses thereof.l  
Therefore fear not men, but fear me; neither sell my signs for a small price.  
And whoso judgeth not according to what GOD hath revealed, they are infidels.
     We have therein commanded them, that they should give life for life,m and 
eye for eye, and nose for nose, and ear for ear, and tooth for tooth; and that 
wounds should also be punished by retaliation:n but whoever should remit it as 
alms, it should be accepted as an atonement for him.  And whoso judgeth not 
according to what GOD hath revealed, they are unjust.
50	We also caused Jesus the son of Mary to follow the footsteps of the 
prophets, confirming the law which was sent down before him; and we gave him 
the gospel, containing direction and light; confirming also the law which was 
given before it, and a direction and admonition unto those who fear God:
     that they who have received the gospel might judge according to what GOD 
hath revealed therein: and whoso judgeth not according to what GOD hath 
revealed, they are transgressors.
     We have also sent down unto thee the book of the Koran with truth, 
confirming that scripture which was revealed before it; and preserving the 
same safe from corruption.  Judge therefore between them according to that 
which GOD hath revealed; and follow not their desires, by swerving from the 
truth which hath come unto thee.  Unto every of you have we given a law, and 
an open path;
     and if GOD had pleased, he had surely made you one people;o but he hath 
thought fit to give you different laws, that he might try you in that which he 
hath given you respectively.  Therefore strive to excel each other in good 
works: unto GOD shall ye all return, and then will he declare unto you that 
concerning which ye have disagreed.

	h  In the following passage Mohammed endeavours to answer the objections 
of the Jews and Christians, who insisted that they ought to be judged, the 
former by the law of Moses, and the latter by the gospel.  He allows that the 
law was the proper rule of judging till the coming revelation of the Korān, 
which is so far from being contradictory to either of the former, that it is 
more full and explicit; declaring several points which had been stifled or 
corrupted therein, and requiring a rigorous execution of the precepts in both, 
which had been too remissly observed, or rather neglected, by the latter 
professors of those religions.
	i  That is, notwithstanding their outward submission, they will not 
abide by thy sentence, though conformable to the law, if it contradict their 
own false and loose decisions.
	k  As gainsaying the doctrine of the books which they acknowledge for 
	l  That is, vigilant, to prevent any corruptions therein.
	m  The original word is soul.
	n  See Exod. xxi. 24, &c.
	o  i.e., He had given you the same laws, which should have continued in 
force through all ages, without being abolished or changed by new 
dispensations; or he could have forced you all to embrace the Mohammedan 

					1  Idem.

     Wherefore do thou, O prophet, judge between them according to that which 
GOD hath revealed, and follow not their desires; but beware of them, lest they 
cause thee to errp from part of those precepts which GOD hath sent down unto 
thee; and if they turn back,q know that GOD is pleased to punish them for some 
of their crimes; for a great number of men are transgressors.
     Do they therefore desire the judgment of the time of ignorance?r but who 
is better than GOD, to judge between people who reason aright?
     O true believers, take not the Jews or Christians for your friends; they 
are friends the one to the other; but whoso among you taketh them for his 
friends, he is surely one of them: verily GOD directeth not unjust people.
     Thou shalt see those in whose hearts there is an infirmity, to hasten 
unto them, saying, We fear lest some adversity befall us;s but it is easy for 
GOD to give victory, or a command from him,t that they may repent of that 
which they concealed in their minds.
     And they who believe will say, Are these the men who have sworn by GOD, 
with a most firm oath, that they surely held with you?u their works are become 
vain, and they are of those who perish.
     O true believers, whoever of you apostatizeth from his religion, GOD will 
certainly bring other people to supply his place,x whom he will love, and who 
will love him; who shall be humble towards the believers; but severe to the 
unbelievers: they shall fight for the religion of GOD, and shall not fear the 
obloquy of the detractor.  This is the bounty of GOD, he bestoweth it on whom 
he pleaseth: GOD is extensive and wise.

	p  It is related that certain of the Jewish priests came to Mohammed 
with a design to entrap him; and having first represented to him that if they 
acknowledged him for a prophet, the rest of the Jews would certainly follow 
their example, made this proposal-that if he would give judgment for them in a 
controversy of moment which they pretended to have with their own people, and 
which was agreed to be referred to his decision, they would believe him; but 
this Mohammed absolutely refused to comply with.2
	q  Or refuse to be judged by the Korān.
	r  That is, to be judged according to the customs of paganism, which 
indulge the passions and vicious appetites of mankind: for this, it seems, was 
demanded by the Jewish tribes of Koreidha and al Nadīr.3
	s  These were the words of Ebn Obba, who, when Obādah Ebn al Sāmat 
publicly renounced the friendship of the infidels, and professed that he took 
GOD and his apostle for his patrons, said that he was a man apprehensive of 
the fickleness of fortune, and therefore would not throw off his old friends, 
who might be of service to him hereafter.1
	t  To extirpate and banish the Jews; or to detect and punish the 
	u  These words may be spoken by the Mohammedans either to one another or 
to the Jews, since these hypocrites had given their oaths to both.2
	x  This is one of those accidents which, it is pretended, were foretold 
by the Korān long before they came to pass.  For in the latter days of 
Mohammed, and after his death, considerable numbers of the Arabs quitted his 
religion, and returned to Paganism, Judaism, or Christianity.  Al Beidāwi 
reckons them up in the following order.  1.  Three companies of Banu Modlaj, 
seduced by Dhu'lhamār al Aswad al Ansi, who set up for a prophet in Yaman, and 
grew very powerful there.3  2.  Banu Honeifa, who followed the famous false 
prophet Moseilama.4  3.  Banu Asad, who acknowledged Toleiha Ebn Khowailed, 
another Banu Asad, who acknowledged Toleiha Ebn Khowailed, another pretender 
to divine revelation,5 for their prophet.  All these fell off in Mohammed's 
lifetime.  The following, except only the last, apostatized in the reign of 
Abu Becr.  4.  Certain of the tribe of Fezārah, headed by Oyeyma Ebn Hosein.  
5.  Some of the tribe of Ghatfān, whose leader was Korrah Ebn Salma.  6.  Banu 
Soleim, who followed al Fajāah Ebn Ad Yalīl.  7.  Banu Yarbu, whose captain 
was Malec Ebn Noweirah Ebn Kais.  8.  Part of the tribe of Tamīm, the 
proselytes of Sajāj the daughter of al Mondhar, who gave herself out for a 
prophetess.6  9.  The tribe of Kendah, led by al Ashįth Ebn Kais.  10.  Banu 
Becr Ebn al Wayel, in the province of Bahrein, headed by al Hotam Ebn Zeid.  
And, 11.  Some of the tribe of Ghassān, who with their prince Jabalah Ebn al 
Ayham, renounced Mohammedism in the time of Omar, and returned to their former 
profession of Christianity.7
	But as to the persons who fulfilled the other part of this prophecy, by 
supplying the loss of so many renegades, the commentators are not agreed.  
Some will have them to be the inhabitants of Yaman, and others the Persians; 
the authority of Mohammed himself being vouched for both opinions.  Others, 
however, suppose them to be 2,000 of the tribe of al Nakhį (who dwelt in 
Yaman), 5,000 of those of Kendah and Bajīlah, and 3,000 of unknown descent,8 
who were present at the famous battle of Kadesia, fought in the Khalīfat of 
Omar, and which put an end to the Persian empire.9

	2  Al Beidāwi.		3  Idem.		1  Idem.		2  Idem.	
	3  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. VIII.
4  See ibid.		5  See Ibid.		6  See ibid.		7  See 
ibid. Sect I.		8  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 226.
9  Al Beidāwi.

60	Verily your protector is GOD, and his apostle, and those who believe, 
who observe the stated times of prayer, and give alms, and who bow down to 
     And whoso taketh GOD, and his apostle, and the believers for his friends, 
they are the party of GOD, and they shall be victorious.
     O true believers, take not such of those to whom the scriptures were 
delivered before you, or of the infidels, for your friends, who make a 
laughing-stock, and a jest of your religion;y but fear GOD, if ye be true 
     nor those who when ye call to prayer, make a laughing-stock and a jest of 
it;z this they do, because they are people who do not understand.
     Say, O ye who have received the scriptures, do ye reject us for any other 
reason than because we believe in GOD, and that revelation which hath been 
sent down unto us, and that which was formerly sent down, and for that the 
greater part of you are transgressors?
     Say, Shall I denounce unto you a worse thing than this, as to the reward 
which ye are to expect with GOD?  He whom GOD hath cursed, and with whom he 
hath been angry, having changed some of them into apes and swine,a and who 
worship Taghūt,b they are in the worse condition, and err more widely from the 
straightness of the path.
     When they came unto you, they said, We believe: yet they entered into 
your company with infidelity, and went forth from you with the same; but GOD 
well knew what they concealed.
     Thou shalt see many of them hastening unto iniquity and malice, and to 
eat things forbidden;c and woe unto them for what they have done.
     Unless their doctors and priests forbid them uttering wickedness, and 
eating things forbidden; woe unto them for what they shall have committed.
     The Jews say, The hand of GOD is tied up.d  Their hands shall be tied 
up,e and they shall be cursed for that which they have said.  Nay his hands 
are both stretched forth; he bestoweth as he pleaseth: that which hath been 
sent down unto thee from thy LORDf shall increase the transgression and 
infidelity of many of them; and we have put enmity and hatred between them, 
until the day of resurrection.  So often as they shall kindle a fire for war 
GOD shall extinguish it;g and they shall set their minds to act corruptly in 
the earth, but GOD loveth not the corrupt doers.

	y  This passage was primarily intended to forbid the Moslems entering 
into a friendship with two hypocrites named Refāa Ebn Zeid, and Soweid Ebn al 
Hareth, who, though they had embraced Mohammedism, yet ridiculed it on all 
occasions, and were notwithstanding greatly beloved among the prophet's 
	z  These words were added on occasion of a certain Christian, who 
hearing the Muadhdhin, or crier, in calling to prayers, repeat this part of 
the usual form, I profess that Mohammed is the apostle of GOD, said aloud, May 
GOD burn the liar: but a few nights after his own house was accidentally set 
on fire by a servant, and himself and his family perished in the flames.1
	a  The former were the Jews of Ailah, who broke the sabbath;2 and the 
latter those who believed not in the miracle of the table which was let down 
from heaven to Jesus.3  Some, however, imagine that the Jews of Ailah only are 
meant in this place, pretending that the young men among them were 
metamorphosed into apes, and the old men into swine.4
	b  See chap. 2, p. 28.
	c  See before, p. 73.
	d  That is, he is become niggardly and close-fisted.  These were the 
words of Phineas Ebn Azūra (another indecent expression of whom, almost to the 
same purpose, is mentioned elsewhere)5 when the Jews were much impoverished by 
a dearth, which the commentators will have to be a judgment on them for their 
rejecting of Mohammed; and the other Jews who heard him, instead of reproving 
him, expressed their approbation of what he had said.6
	e  i.e., They shall be punished with want and avarice.  The words may 
also allude to the manner wherein the reprobates shall appear at the last day, 
having their right hands tied up to their necks;7 which is the proper 
signification of the Arabic word.
	f  viz., The Korān.
	g  Either by raising feuds and quarrels among themselves, or by granting 
the victory to the Moslems.  Al Beidāwi adds, that on the Jews neglecting the 
true observance of their law, and corrupting their religion, GOD has 
successively delivered them into the hands, first of Bakht Nasr or 
Nebuchadnezzar, then of Titus the Roman, and afterwards of the Persians, and 
has now at last subjected them to the Mohammedans.

	1  Idem.		2  See c. 2, p. 8.		3  See towards the end 
of this chapter		4  Al Beidāwi.
5  Cap. 3, p. 51.		6  Al Beidāwi.		7  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. 

70	Moreover if they who have received the scriptures believe, and fear God, 
we will surely expiate their sins from them, and we will lead them into 
gardens of pleasure; and if they observe the law, and the gospel, and the 
other scriptures which have been sent down unto them from their LORD, they 
shall surely eat of good things both from above them, and from under their 
feet.h  Among them there are people who act uprightly; but how evil is that 
which many of them do work!
     O apostle, publish the whole of that which hath been sent down unto thee 
from thy LORD: for if thou do not, thou dost not in effect publish any part 
thereof;i and GOD will defend thee against wicked men;k for GOD directeth not 
the unbelieving people.
     Say, O ye who have received the scriptures, ye are not grounded on 
anything, until ye observe the law and the gospel and that which hath been 
sent down unto you from your LORD.  That which hath been sent down unto thee 
from thy LORD will surely increase the transgression and infidelity of many of 
them: but be not thou solicitous for the unbelieving people.
     Verily they who believe, and those who Judaize, and the Sabians, and the 
Christians, whoever of them believeth in GOD and the last day, and doth that 
which is right, there shall come no fear on them, neither shall they be 
     We formerly accepted the covenant of the children of Israel, and sent 
apostles unto them.  So often as an apostle came unto them with that which 
their souls desired not, they accused some of them of imposture, and some of 
them they killed:
     and they imagined that there should be no punishment for those crimes, 
and they became blind, and deaf.m  Then was GOD turned unto them;n afterwards 
many of them again became blind and deaf; but GOD saw what they did.

	h  That is, they shall enjoy the blessings both of heaven and earth.
	i  That is, if thou do not complete the publication of all thy 
revelations without exception, thou dost not answer the end for which they 
were revealed; because the concealing of any part, renders the system of 
religion which GOD has thought fit to publish to mankind by thy ministry lame 
and imperfect.1
	k  Until this verse was revealed, Mohammed entertained a guard of armed 
men for his security, but on his receiving this assurance of GOD'S protection, 
he immediately dismissed them.2
	l  See chap. 2, p. 8.
	m  Shutting their eyes and ears against conviction and the remonstrance 
of the law; as when they worshipped the calf.
	n  i.e., Upon their repentance.

			1  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.		2  Idem.

     They are surely infidels, who say, Verily GOD is Christ the son of Mary; 
since Christ said, O children of Israel, serve GOD, my LORD and your LORD; 
whoever shall give a companion unto GOD, GOD shall exclude him from paradise, 
and his habitation shall be hell fire; and the ungodly shall have none to help 
     They are certainly infidels, who say, GOD is the third of three:o for 
there is no GOD, besides one GOD; and if they refrain not from what they say, 
a painful torment shall surely be inflicted on such of them as are 
     Will they not therefore be turned unto GOD, and ask pardon of him? since 
GOD is gracious and merciful.
     Christ the son of Mary is no more than an apostle; other apostles have 
preceded him; and his mother was a woman of veracity:p they both ate food.q  
Behold, how we declare unto them the signs of God's unity; and then behold how 
they turn aside from the truth.
80	Say unto them, Will ye worship, besides GOD, that which can cause you 
neither harm nor profit?  GOD is he who heareth and seeth.
     Say, O ye who have received the scriptures, exceed not the just bounds in 
your religion,r by speaking beside the truth; neither follow the desires of 
people who have heretofore erred, and who have seduced many, and have gone 
astray from the straight path.s
     Those among the children of Israel who believe not were cursed by the 
tongue of David, and of Jesus the son of Mary.t  This befell them because they 
were rebellious and transgressed: they forbade not one another the wickedness 
which they committed; and woe unto them for what they committed.
     Thou shalt see many of them take for their friends those who believe not.  
Woe unto them for what their souls have sent before them,u for that GOD is 
incensed against them, and they shall remain in torment forever.
     But, if they had believed in GOD, and the prophet, and that which hath 
been revealed unto him, they had not taken them for their friends; but many of 
them are evil-doers.
     Thou shalt surely find the most violent of all men in enmity against the 
true believers to be the Jews, and the idolaters: and thou shalt surely find 
those among them to be the most inclinable to entertain friendship for the 
true believers, who say, We are Christians.  This cometh to pass, because 
there are priests and monks among them; and because they are not elated with 
     And when they hear that which hath been sent down to the apostle read 
unto them, thou shalt see their eyes overflow with tears, because of the truth 
which they perceive therein,y saying, O LORD, we believe; write us down 
therefore with those who bear witness to the truth,

	o  See chap. 4, p. 72.
	p  Never pretending to partake of the divine nature, or to be the mother 
of GOD.3
	q  Being obliged to support their lives by the same means, and being 
subject to the same necessities and infirmities as the rest of mankind, and 
therefore no Gods.1
	r  See chap. 4, p. 72.  But here the words are principally directed to 
the Christians.
	s  That is, of their prelates and predecessors, who erred in ascribing 
divinity to Christ, before the mission of Mohammed.2
	t  See before, p. 81, note a.
	u  See chap. 2, p. 11, note r.
	x  Having not that high conceit of themselves, as the Jews have; but 
being humble and well disposed to receive the truth; qualities, says al 
Beidāwi, which are to be commended even in infidels.
	y  The persons directly intended in this passage were, either Ashama, 
king of Ethiopia, and several bishops and priests, who, being assembled for 
that purpose, heard Jaafar Ebn Abi Taleb, who fled to that country in the 
first flight,3 read the 29th and 30th, and afterwards the 18th and 19th 
chapters of the Korān; on hearing of which the king and the rest of the 
company burst into tears, and confessed what was delivered therein to be 
conformable to truth; that prince himself, in particular, becoming a proselyte 
to Mohammedism:4 or else, thirty, or as others say, seventy persons, sent 
ambassadors to Mohammed by the same king of Ethiopia, to whom the prophet 
himself read the 36th chapter, entitled Y.S.  Whereupon they began to weep, 
saying, How like is this to that which was revealed unto Jesus! and 
immediately professed themselves Moslems.5

	2  Jallalo'ddin.		1  Idem, al Beidāwi.		2  Idem.	
	3  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. II.
4  Al Beidāwi, al Thalabi.  Vide Abulfed.  Vit. Moham. p. 25, &c.  Marracc. 
Prodr. ad Refut. Alcor. part i. p. 45.		5  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin.  
Vide Marracc. ubi sup.

     and what should hinder us from believing in GOD, and the truth which hath 
come unto us, and from earnestly desiring that our LORD would introduce us 
into paradise with the righteous people?
     Therefore hath GOD rewarded them, for what they have said, with gardens 
through which rivers flow; they shall continue therein forever; and this is 
the reward of the righteous.  But they who believe not, and accuse our signs 
of falsehood, they shall be the companions of hell.
     O true believers, forbid not the good things which GOD hath allowed you;z 
but transgress not, for GOD loveth not the transgressors.
90	And eat of what GOD hath given you for food that which is lawful and 
good: and fear GOD, in whom ye believe.
     GOD will not punish you for an inconsiderate word in your oaths;a but he 
will punish you for what ye solemnly swear with deliberation.  And the 
expiation of such an oath shall be the feeding of ten poor men with such 
moderate food as ye feed your own families withal; or to clothe them;b or to 
free the neck of a true believer from captivity: but he who shall not find 
wherewith to perform one of these three things shall fast three days.c  This 
is the expiation of your oaths, when ye swear inadvertently.  Therefore keep 
your oaths.  Thus GOD declareth unto you his signs, that ye may give thanks.
     O true believers, surely wine, and lots,d and images,e and divining 
arrows,f are an abomination of the work of Satan; therefore avoid them that ye 
may prosper.
     Satan seeketh to sow dissension and hatred among you, by means of wine 
and lots, and to divert you from remembering GOD, and from prayer: will ye not 
therefore abstain from them?  Obey GOD, and obey the apostle, and take heed to 
yourselves: but if ye turn back, know that the duty of our apostle is only to 
preach publicly.g
     In those who believe and do good works, it is no sin that they have 
tasted wine or gaming before they were forbidden; if they fear God, and 
believe, and do good works, and shall for the future fear God, and believe, 
and shall persevere to fear him, and to do good;h for GOD loveth those who do 

	z  These words were revealed when certain of Mohammed's companions 
agreed to oblige themselves to continual fasting and watching, and to abstain 
from women, eating flesh, sleeping on beds, and other lawful enjoyments of 
life, in imitation of some self-denying Christians; but this the prophet 
disapproved, declaring that he would have no monks in his religion.1
	a  See chap. 2, p. 24.
	b  The commentators give us the different opinions of the doctors, as to 
the quantity of food and clothes to be given in this case; which I think 
scarce worth transcribing.
	c  That is, three days together, says Abu Hanīfa.  But this is not 
observed in practice, being neither explicitly commanded in the Korān, nor 
ordered in the Sonna.2
	d  That is, all inebriating liquors, and games of chance.  See the 
Prelim. Disc. Sect. V. and chap. 2, p. 23.
	e  Al Beidāwi and some other commentators expound this of idols; but 
others, with more probability, of the carved pieces or men, with which the 
pagan Arabs played at chess, being little figures of men, elephants, horses, 
and dromedaries; and this is supposed to be the only thing Mohammed disliked 
in that game: for which reason the Sonnites play with plain pieces of wood or 
ivory; but the Persians and Indians, who are not so scrupulous, still make use 
of the carved ones.3
	f  See the Prelim. Discourse, Sect. V.
	g  See ibid. Sect. II.
	h  The commentators endeavour to excuse the tautology of this passage, 
by supposing the threefold repetition of fearing and believing refers either 
to the three parts of time, past, present, and future, or to the threefold 
duty of man, towards GOD, himself, and his neighbour, &c.4

	1  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi.		2  Al Beidāwi.		3  Vide 
Prelim Disc. Sect. V.		4  Al Beidāwi.

     O true believers, GOD will surely prove you in offering you plenty of 
game, which ye may take with your hands or your lances,i that GOD may know who 
feareth him in secret; but whoever transgresseth after this shall suffer a 
grievous punishment.
     O true believers, kill no game while ye are on pilgrimage;k whosoever 
among you shall kill any designedly shall restore the like of what he shall 
have killed, in domestic animals,l according to the determination of two just 
persons among you, to be brought as an offering to the Caaba; or in atonement 
thereof shall feed the poor; or instead thereof shall fast, that he may taste 
the heinousness of his deed.  GOD hath forgiven what is past, but whoever 
returneth to transgress, GOD will take vengeance on him; for GOD is mighty and 
able to avenge.
     It is lawful for you to fish in the sea,m and to eat what ye shall catch, 
as a provision for you and for those who travel; but it is unlawful for you to 
hunt by land, while ye are performing the rights of pilgrimage;n therefore 
fear GOD, before whom ye shall be assembled at the last day.
     GOD hath appointed the Caaba, the holy house, an establishment for 
mankind; and hath ordained the sacred month,q and the offering, and the 
ornaments hung thereon.q  This hath he done that ye might know that GOD 
knoweth whatsoever is in heaven and on earth, and that GOD is omniscient.  
Know that GOD is severe in punishing, and that GOD is also ready to forgive, 
and merciful. 
     The duty of our apostle is to preach only;r and GOD knoweth that which ye 
discover, and that which ye conceal.
100	Say, Evil and good shall not be equally esteemed of, though the 
abundance of evil pleaseth thee;s therefore fear GOD, O ye of understanding, 
that ye may be happy.

	i  This temptation or trial was at al Hodeibiya, where Mohammed's men, 
who had attended him thither with an intent to perform a pilgrimage to the 
Caaba, and had initiated themselves with the usual rites, were surrounded by 
so great a number of birds and beasts that they impeded their march; for which 
unusual accident, some of them concluded that GOD had allowed them to be 
taken; but this passage was to convince them of the contrary.1
	k  Literally, while ye are Mohrims, or have actually initiated 
yourselves as pilgrims, by putting on the garment worn at that solemnity.  
Hunting and fowling are hereby absolutely forbidden to persons in this state, 
though they are allowed to kill certain kinds of noxious animals.2
	l  That is, he shall bring an offering to the temple of Mecca, to be 
slain there and distributed among the poor, of some domestic or tame animal, 
equal in value to what he shall have killed; as a sheep, for example, in lieu 
of an antelope, a pigeon for a partridge, &c.  And of this value two prudent 
persons were to be judges.  If the offender was not able to do this, he was to 
give a certain quantity of food to one or more poor men; or, if he could not 
afford that, to fast a proportionable number of days.3
	m  This, says Jallalo'ddin, is to be understood of fish that live 
altogether in the sea, and not of those that live in the sea and on land both, 
as crabs, &c.  The Turks, who are Hanifites, never eat this sort of fish; but 
the sect of Malec Ebn Ans, and perhaps some others, make no scruple of it.
	n  See above, note k.
	o  That is, the place where the practice of their religious ceremonies 
is chiefly established; where those who are under any apprehension of danger 
may find a sure asylum, and the merchant certain gain, &c.4
	p  Al Beidāwi understands this of the month of Dhu'lhajja, wherein the 
ceremonies of the pilgrimage are performed; but Jallalo'ddin supposes all the 
four sacred months are here intended.5
	q  See before, p. 73.
	r  See the Prelim. Discourse, Sect. II.
	s  For judgment is to be made of things not from their plenty or 
scarcity, but from their intrinsic good or bad qualities.6

	1  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.		2  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. V.	
	3  Jallalo'ddin, al Beidāwi		4  Idem.
5  See the Prelim Disc. Sect. VII		6  Al Beidāwi.

     O true believers, inquire not concerning things, which, if they be 
declared unto you, may give you pain;t but if ye ask concerning them when the 
Koran is sent down, they will be declared unto you: GOD pardoneth you as to 
these matters; for GOD is ready to forgive, and gracious.  People who have 
been before you formerly inquired concerning them; and afterwards disbelieved 
     God hath not ordained anything concerning Bahīra, nor Sāļba, nor Wasīla, 
nor Hāmi,u but the unbelievers have invented a lie against GOD: and the 
greater part of them do not understand.
     And when it was said unto them, Come unto that which GOD hath revealed, 
and to the apostle; they answered, That religion which we found our fathers to 
follow is sufficient for us.  What, though their fathers knew nothing and were 
not rightly directed?
     O true believers, take care of your souls!  He who erreth shall not hurt 
you, while ye are rightly directed:x unto GOD shall ye all return, and he will 
tell you that which ye have done.
     O true believers, let witnesses be taken between you, when death 
approaches any of you, at the time of making the testament; let there be two 
witnesses, just men, from among you;y or two others of a different tribe or 
faith from yourselves,z if ye be journeying in the earth, and the accident of 
death befall you.  Ye shall shut them both up, after the afternoon prayer,a 
and they shall swear by GOD, if ye doubt them, and they shall say, We will not 
sell our evidence for a bribe, although the person concerned be one who is 
related to us, neither will we conceal the testimony of GOD, for then should 
we certainly be of the number of the wicked.
     But if it appear that both have been guilty of iniquity, two others shall 
stand up in their place, of those who have convicted them of falsehood, the 
two nearest in blood, and they shall swear by GOD, saying, Verily our 
testimony is more true than the testimony of these two, neither have we 
prevaricated; for then should we become of the number of the unjust.

	t  The Arabs continually teasing their prophet with questions, which 
probably he was not always prepared to answer, they are here ordered to wait, 
till GOD should think fit to declare his pleasure by some farther revelation; 
and, to abate their curiosity, they are told, at the same time, that very 
likely the answers would not be agreeable to their inclinations.  Al Beidāwi 
says, that when the pilgrimage was first commanded, Sorāka Ebn Malec asked 
Mohammed whether they were obliged to perform it every year?  To this question 
the prophet at first turned a deaf ear, but being asked it a second and a 
third time, he at last said, No; but if I had said yes it would have become a 
duty, and, if it were a duty, ye would not be able to perform it; therefore 
give me no trouble as to things wherein I give you none: whereupon this 
passage was revealed.
	u  These were the names given by the pagan Arabs to certain camels or 
sheep which were turned loose to feed, and exempted from common services, in 
some particular cases; having their ears slit, or some other mark, that they 
might be known; and this they did in honour of their gods.1  Which 
superstitions are here declared to be no ordinances of God, but the inventions 
of foolish men.
	x  This was revealed when the infidels reproached those who embraced 
Mohammedism and renounced their old idolatry, that by so doing they arraigned 
the wisdom of their forefathers.2
	y  That is, of your kindred or religion.
	z  They who interpret these words of persons of another religion, say 
they are abrogated, and that the testimony of such ought not to be received 
against a Moslem.3
	a  In case there was any doubt, the witnesses were to be kept apart from 
company, lest they should be corrupted, till they gave their evidence, which 
they generally did when the afternoon prayer was over, because that was the 
time of people's assembling in public, or, say some, because the guardian 
angels then relieve each other, so that there would be four angels to witness 
against them if they gave false evidence.  But others suppose they might be 
examined after the hour of any other prayer, when there was a sufficient 

	1  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. V		2  Al Beidāwi.		3  
Idem.		4  Idem.

     This will be easier, that men may give testimony according to the plain 
intention thereof, or fear lest a different oath be given, after their oath.  
Therefore fear GOD, and hearken; for GOD directeth not the unjust people.b
     On a certain dayc shall GOD assemble the apostles, and shall say unto 
them, What answer was returned you, when ye preached unto the people to whom 
ye were sent?  They shall answer, We have no knowledge, but thou art the 
knower of secrets.d
     When GOD shall say, O Jesus son of Mary, remember my favor towards thee, 
and towards thy mother; when I strengthened thee with the holy spirit,e that 
thou shouldest speak unto men in the cradle, and when thou wast grown up;f
110	and when I taught thee the scripture, and wisdom and the law, and the 
gospel: and when thou didst create of clay as it were the figure of a bird, by 
my permission, and didst breathe thereon, and it became a bird, by my 
permission, and thou didst heal one blind from his birth, and the leper, by my 
permission;g and when thou didst bring forth the dead from their graves by my 
permission; and when I withheld the children of Israel from killing thee,h 
when thou hadst come unto them with evident miracles, and such of them as 
believed not said, This is nothing but manifest sorcery.
     And when I commanded the apostles of Jesus saying, Believe in me, and in 
my messenger; they answered, We do believe; and do thou bear witness that we 
are resigned unto thee.
     Remember when the apostles said, O Jesus son of Mary, is thy LORD able to 
cause a table to descend unto us from heaven?i  He answered, Fear GOD, if ye 
be true believers.

	b  The occasion of the preceding passage is said to have been this.  
Tamīn al Dāri and Addi Ebn Yāzid, both Christians, took a journey into Syria 
to trade, in company with Bodeil, the freed man of Amru Ebn al As, who was a 
Moslem.  When they came to Damascus, Bodeil fell sick, and died, having first 
wrote down a list of his effects on a piece of paper, which he hid in his 
baggage, without acquainting his companions with it, and desired them only to 
deliver what he had to his friends of the tribe of Sahm.  The survivors, 
however, searching among his goods, found a vessel of silver of considerable 
weight, and inlaid with gold, which they concealed, and on their return 
delivered the rest to the deceased's relations, who, finding the list of 
Bodeil's writing, demanded the vessel of silver of them, but they denied it; 
and the affair being brought before Mohammed, these words, viz., O true 
believers, take witnesses, &c., were revealed, and he ordered them to be sworn 
at the pulpit in the mosque, just as afternoon prayer was over, and on their 
making oath that they knew nothing of the plate demanded, dismissed them.  But 
afterwards, the vessel being found in their hands, the Sahmites, suspecting it 
was Bodeil's, charged them with it, and they confessed it was his, but 
insisted that they had bought it of him, and that they had not produced it 
because they had no proof of the bargain.  Upon this they went again before 
Mohammed, to whom these words, And if it appear, &c., were revealed; and 
thereupon Amru Ebn al As and al Motalleb Ebn Abi Refāa, both of the tribe of 
Sahm, stood up, and were sworn against them; and judgment was given 
	c  That is, on the day of judgment.
	d  That is, we are ignorant whether our proselytes were sincere, or 
whether they apostatized after our deaths; but thou well knowest, not only 
what answer they gave us, but the secrets of their hearts, and whether they 
have since continued firm in their religion or not.
	e  See chapter 2, p. 10.
	f  See chapter 3, p. 37.
	g  See ibid.
	h  See ibid. p. 38.

					1  Al Beidāwi.

     They said, We desire to eat thereof, and that our hearts may rest at 
ease, and that we may know that thou hast told us the truth, and that we may 
be witnesses thereof.
     Jesus the son of Mary said, O GOD our LORD, cause a table to descend unto 
us from heaven, that the day of its descent may become a festival dayk unto 
us, unto the first of us, and unto the last of us, and a sign from thee; and 
do thou provide food for us, for thou art the best provider.
     GOD said, Verily I will cause it to descend unto you; but whoever among 
you shall disbelieve hereafter, I will surely punish him with a punishment, 
wherewith I will not punish any other creature.
     And when GOD shall say unto Jesus, at the last day, O Jesus son of Mary, 
hast thou said unto men, Take me and my mother for two gods, beside GOD?  He 
shall answer, Praise be unto thee! it is not for me to say that which I ought 
not; if I had said so, thou wouldest surely have known it: thou knowest what 
is in me, but I know not what is in thee; for thou art the knower of secrets.
     I have not spoken to them any other than what thou didst command me; 
namely, Worship GOD, my LORD and your LORD: and I was a witness of their 
actions while I staid among them; but since thou hast taken me to thyself,l 
thou hast been the watcher over them; for thou art witness of all things.
     If thou punish them, they are surely thy servants; and if thou forgive 
them, thou art mighty and wise.
     GOD will say, This day shall their veracity be of advantage unto those 
who speak truth; they shall have gardens wherein rivers flow, they shall 
remain therein forever: GOD hath been well pleased in them, and they have been 
well pleased in him.  This shall be great felicity.
120	Unto GOD belongeth the kingdom of heaven and of earth, and of whatever 
therein is; and he is almighty.

	i  This miracle is thus related by the commentators.  Jesus having, at 
the request of his followers, asked it of God, a red table immediately 
descended, in their sight, between two clouds, and was set before them; 
whereupon he rose up, and having made the ablution, prayed, and then took off 
the cloth which covered the table, saying, In the name of GOD, the best 
provider of food.  What the provisions were with which this table was 
furnished is a matter wherein the expositors are not agreed.  One will have 
them to be nine cakes of bread and nine fishes; another bread and flesh; 
another, all sorts of food, except flesh; another all sorts of food, except 
bread and flesh; another, all except bread and fish; another, one fish, which 
had the taste of all manner of food; and another, fruits of paradise; but the 
most received tradition is that when the table was uncovered, there appeared a 
fish ready dressed, without scales or prickly fins, dropping with fat, having 
salt placed at its head and vinegar at its tail, and round it all sorts of 
herbs, except leeks, and five loaves of bread, on one of which there were 
olives, on the second honey, on the third butter, on the fourth cheese, and on 
the fifth dried flesh.  They add that Jesus, at the request of the apostles, 
showed them another miracle, by restoring the fish to life, and causing its 
scales and fins to return to it, at which the standers-by being affrighted, he 
caused it to become as it was before; that 1,300 men and women, all afflicted 
with bodily infirmities or poverty, ate of these provisions, and were 
satisfied, the fish remaining whole as it was at first; that then the table 
flew up to heaven in the sight of all; and every one who had partaken of this 
food were delivered from their infirmities and misfortunes; and that it 
continued to descend for forty days together at dinner-time, and stood on the 
ground till the sun declined, and was then taken up into the clouds.  Some of 
the Mohammedan writers are of opinion that this table did not really descend, 
but that it was only a parable; but most think the words of the Korān are 
plain to the contrary.  A further tradition is, that several men were changed 
into swine for disbelieving this miracle, and attributing it to magic art; or, 
as others pretend, for stealing some of the victuals from off it.1  Several 
other fabulous circumstances are also told, which are scarce worth 
	k  Some say the table descended on a Sunday, which was the reason of the 
Christians observing that day as sacred.  Others pretend this day is still 
kept among them as a very great festival; and it seems as if the story had its 
rise from an imperfect notion of Christ's last supper and the institution of 
the Eucharist.
	i Or, since thou hast caused me to die: but as it is a dispute among the 
Mohammedans whether Christ actually died or not, before his assumption,3 and 
the original may be translated either way, I have chosen the former 
expression, which leaves the matter undecided.

	Idem, al Thalabi.		2  Vide Marracc. in Alc. p. 238, &c.	
	3  See cap. 3, p. 38.




     PRAISE be unto GOD, who hath created the heavens and the earth, and hath 
ordained the darkness and the light; nevertheless they who believe not in the 
LORD equalize other gods with him.
     It is he who hath created you of clay; and then decreed the term of your 
lives; and the prefixed term is with him:o yet do ye doubt thereof.
     He is GOD in heaven and in earth; he knoweth what ye keep secret, and 
what ye publish, and knoweth what ye deserve.
     There came not unto them any sign, of the signs of their LORD, but they 
retired from the same;
     and they have gainsaid the truth, after that it hath come unto them: but 
a message shall come unto them, concerning that which they have mocked at.p
     Do they not consider how many generations we have destroyed before them?  
We had established them in the earth in a manner wherein we have not 
established you;q we sent the heaven to rain abundantly upon them, and we gave 
them rivers which flowed under their feet: yet we destroyed them in their 
sins, and raised up other generations after them.
     Although we had caused to descend unto thee a book written on paper, and 
they had handled it with their hands, the unbelievers had surely said, This is 
no other than manifest sorcery.
     They said, Unless an angel be sent down unto him, we will not believe.  
But if we had sent down an angel, verily the matter had ben decreed,r and they 
should not have been borne with, by having time granted them to repent.
     And if we had appointed an angel for our messenger, we should have sent 
him in the form of a man,s and have clothed him before them, as they are 
10	Other apostles have been laughed to scorn before thee, but the judgment 
which they made a jest of encompassed those who laughed them to scorn.
     Say, Go through the earth, and behold what hath been the end of those, 
who accused our prophets of imposture.
     Say, Unto whom belongeth whatsoever is in heaven and earth?  Say, Unto 
GOD, He hath prescribed unto himself mercy.  He will surely gather you 
together on the day of resurrection; there is no doubt of it.  They who 
destroy their own souls are those who will not believe.

	m  This chapter is so entitled, because some superstitious customs of 
the Meccans, as to certain cattle, are therein incidentally mentioned.
	n  Except only six verses, or, say others, three verses, which are taken 
notice of in the notes.
	o  By the last term some understand the time of the resurrection.  
Others think that by the first term is intended the space between creation and 
death, and by the latter, that between death and the resurrection.
	p  That is, they shall be convinced of the truth which they have made a 
jest of, when they see the punishment which they shall suffer for so doing, 
both in this world and the next; or when they shall see the glorious success 
of Mohammedism.
	q  i.e., We had blessed them with greater power and length of prosperity 
than we have granted you, O men of Mecca.1  Mohammed seems here to mean the 
ancient and potent tribes of Ad and Thamūd, &c.2
	r  That is to say, As they would not have believed, even if an angel had 
descended to them from heaven, GOD has shown his mercy in not complying with 
their demands; for if he had, they would have suffered immediate condemnation, 
and would have been allowed no time for repentance.
	s  As Gabriel generally appeared to Mahommed; who, though a prophet, was 
not able to bear the sight of him when he appeared in his proper form, much 
less would others be able to support it.

		1  Al Beidāwi.		2  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. I. p. 5, 

     Unto him is owing whatsoever happeneth by night or by day; it is he who 
heareth and knoweth.
     Say, Shall I take any other protector than GOD, the creator of heaven and 
earth, who feedeth all and is not fed by any?  Say, Verily I am commanded to 
be the first who professeth Islām,t and it was said unto me, Thou shalt by no 
means be one of the idolaters.
     Say, Verily I fear, if I should rebel against my LORD, the punishment of 
the great day:
     from whomsoever it shall be averted on that day, God will have been 
merciful unto him; this will be manifest salvation.
     If GOD afflict thee with any hurt, there is none who can take it off from 
thee, except himself; but if he cause good to befall thee, he is almighty;
     he is the supreme Lord over his servants, and he is wise and knowing.
     Say, What thing is the strongest in bearing testimony?u  Say, GOD; he is 
witness between me and you. And this Koran was revealed unto me, that I should 
admonish you thereby, and also those unto whom it shall reach.  Do ye really 
profess that there are other gods together with GOD?  Say, I do not profess 
this.  Say, Verily he is one GOD; and I am guiltless of what ye associate with 
20	They unto whom we have given the scripture know our apostle, even as 
they know their own children;x but they who destroy their own souls will not 
     Who is more unjust than he who inventeth a lie against GOD,y or chargeth 
his signs with imposture?  Surely, the unjust shall not prosper.
     And on the day of resurrection we will assemble them all; then will we 
say unto those who associated others with God, Where are your companions,z 
whom ye imagined to be those of God?
     But they shall have no other excuse, than that they shall say, by GOD our 
LORD, we have not been idolaters.
     Behold, how they lie against themselves, and what they have blasphemously 
imagined to be the companion of God flieth from them.a
     There is of them who hearkeneth unto thee when thou readest the Korān;b 
but we have cast veils over their hearts, that they should not understand it, 
and a deafness in their ears: and though they should see all kinds of signs, 
they will not believe therein; and their infidelity will arrive to that height 
that they will even come unto thee, to dispute with thee.  The unbelievers 
will say, This is nothing but silly fables of ancient times.

	t  That is, the first of my nation.1
	u  This passage was revealed when the Koreish told Mohammed that they 
had asked the Jews and Christians concerning him, who assured them they found 
no mention or description of him in their books of scripture, Therefore, said 
they, who bears witness to thee, that thou art the apostle of GOD?2
	x  See chapter 2, p. 16.
	y  Saying the angels are the daughters of GOD, and intercessors for us 
with him, &c.3
	z  i.e., Your idols and false gods.
	a  That is, their imaginary deities prove to be nothing, and disappear 
like vain phantoms and chimeras.
	b  The persons here meant were Abu Sofiān, al Walīd, al Nodar, Otha, Abu 
Jahl, and their comrades, who went to hear Mohammed repeat some of the Korān; 
and Nodar being asked what he said, answered, with an oath, that he knew not, 
only that he moved his tongue, and told a parcel of foolish stories, as he had 
done to them.4

	1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.		3  Al Beidāwi.	
	4  Idem.

     And they will forbid others from believing therein, and will retire afar 
off from it; but they will destroy their own souls only, and they are not 
sensible thereof.
     If thou didst see when they shall be set over the fire of hell!  and they 
shall say, Would to GOD we might be sent back into the world; we would not 
charge the signs of our LORD with imposture, and we would become true 
     nay, but that is become manifest unto them, which they formerly 
concealed;c and though they should be sent back into the world, they would 
surely return to that which was forbidden them; and they are surely liars.
     And they said, There is no other life than our present life; neither 
shall we be raised again.
30	But if thou couldest see, when they shall be set before their LORD!d  He 
shall say unto them, Is not this in truth come to pass?  They shall answer, 
Yea, by our LORD.  God shall say, Taste therefore the punishment due unto you, 
for that ye have disbelieved.
     They are lost who reject as a falsehood the meeting of GOD in the next 
life, until the houre cometh suddenly upon them.  Then will they say, Alas! 
for that we have behaved ourselves negligently in our lifetime; and they shall 
carry their burdens on their backs;f will it not be evil which they shall be 
loaden with?
     This present life is no other than a play and a vain amusement; but 
surely the future mansion shall be better for those who fear God: will they 
not therefore understand?
     Now we know that what they speak grieveth thee: yet they do not accuse 
thee of falsehood; but the ungodly contradict the signs of GOD.g
     And apostles before thee have been accounted liars: but they patiently 
bore their being accounted liars, and their being vexed, until our help came 
unto them; for there is none who can change the words of GOD: and thou hast 
received some information concerning those who have been formerly sent from 
     If their aversion to thy admonitions be grievous unto thee, if thou canst 
seek out a den whereby thou mayest venetrate into the inward parts of the 
earth, or a ladder by which thou mayest ascend into heaven, that thou mayest 
show them a sign, do so, but thy search will be fruitless; for if GOD pleased 
he would bring them all to the true direction: be not therefore one of the 

	c  Their hypocrisy and vile actions; nor does their promise proceed from 
any sincere intention of amendment, but from the anguish and misery of their 
	d  viz., In order for judgment.
	e  The last day is here called the hour, as it is in scripture;6 and the 
preceding expression of meeting GOD on that day is also agreeable to the 
	f  When an infidel comes forth from his grave, says Jallalo'ddin, his 
works shall be represented to him under the ugliest form that ever he beheld, 
having a most deformed countenance, a filthy smell, and a disagreeable voice; 
so that he shall cry out, GOD defend me from thee, what art thou?  I never saw 
anything more detestable!  To which the figure will answer, Why dost thou 
wonder at my ugliness?  I am thy evil works;1 thou didst ride upon me while 
thou wast in the world; but now will I ride upon thee, and thou shalt carry 
me.  and immediately it shall get upon him; and whatever he shall meet shall 
terrify him, and say, Hail, thou enemy of God, thou art he who was meant by 
(these words of the Korān), and they shall carry their burdens, &c.2
	g  That is, it is not thou but GOD whom they injure by their impious 
gainsaying of what has been revealed to thee.  It is said that Abu Jahl once 
told Mohammed that they did not accuse him of falsehood, because he was known 
to be a man of veracity, but only they did not believe the revelations which 
he brought them; which occasioned this passage.3
	h  i.e., Thou has been acquainted with the stories of several of the 
preceding prophets; what persecutions they suffered from those to whom they 
were sent, and in what manner GOD supported them and punished their enemies, 
according to his unalterable promise.4

	5  Idem.		6  1 John v. 25, &c.		7  1 Thess. iv. 17.	
	1  See Milton's Paradise Lost, bk. ii  v. 737, &c.
2  See also cap. 3, p. 48.		3  Al Beidāwi.		4 Idem.

     He will give a favorable answer unto those only who shall hearken with 
attention: and GOD will raise the dead; then unto him shall they return.
     The infidels say, Unless some sign be sent down unto him from his LORD, 
we will not believe: answer, Verily GOD is able to send down a sign: but the 
greater part of them know it not.k
     There is no kind of beast on earth, nor fowl which flieth with its wings, 
but the same is a people like unto you;l we have not omitted anything in the 
book of our decrees: then unto their LORD shall they return.n
     They who accuse our signs of falsehood are deaf and dumb, walking in 
darkness: GOD will lead into error whom he pleaseth, and whom he pleaseth he 
will put in the right way.
40	Say, What think ye? if the punishment of GOD come upon you, or the hour 
of the resurrection come upon you, will ye call upon any other than GOD, if ye 
speak truth?
     yea, him shall ye call upon, and he shall free you from that which ye 
shall ask him to deliver you from, if he pleaseth; and ye shall forget that 
which ye associated with him.o
     We have already sent messengers unto sundry nations before thee, and we 
afflicted them with trouble and adversity that they might humble themselves:
     yet when the affliction which we sent came upon them, they did not humble 
themselves; but their hearts became hardened, and Satan prepared for them that 
which they committed.
     And when they had forgotten that concerning which they had been 
admonished, we opened unto them the gates of all things;p until, while they 
were rejoicing for that which had been given them, we suddenly laid hold on 
them, and behold, they were seized with despair;
     and the utmost part of the people which had acted wickedly was cut off: 
praise be unto GOD, the LORD of all creatures!
     Say, what think ye? if GOD should take away your hearing and your sight, 
and should seal up your hearts; what god besides GOD will restore them unto 
you?  See how variously we show forth the signs of God's unity;q yet do they 
turn aside from them.
     Say unto them, What think ye? if the punishment of GOD come upon you 
suddenly, or in open view;r will any perish, except the ungodly people?
     We send not our messengers otherwise than bearing good tidings and 
denouncing threats.  Whoso therefore shall believe and amend, on them shall no 
fear come, neither shall they be grieved:

	i  In this passage Mohammed is reproved for his impatience in not 
bearing with the obstinacy of his countrymen, and for his indiscreet desire of 
effecting what GOD hath not decreed, namely, the conversion and salvation of 
all men.5
	k  Being both ignorant of GOD'S almighty power, and of the consequence 
of what they ask, which might prove their utter destruction.
	l  Being created and preserved by the same omnipotence and providence as 
ye are.
	m  That is, in the preserved table, wherein GOD'S decrees are written, 
and all things which come to pass in this world, as well the most minute as 
the more momentous, are exactly registered.6
	n  For, according to the Mohammedan belief, the irrational animals will 
also be restored to life at the resurrection, that they may be brought to 
judgment, and have vengeance taken on them for the injuries they did one 
another while in this world.7
	o  That is, ye shall then forsake your false gods, when ye shall be 
effectually convinced that GOD alone is able to deliver you from eternal 
punishment.  But others rather think that this forgetting will be the effect 
of the distress and terror which they will then be in.8
	p  That is, we gave them all manner of plenty; that since they took no 
warning by their afflictions, their prosperity might become a snare to them, 
and they might bring down upon themselves swifter destruction.
	q  Laying them before you in different views, and making use of 
arguments and motives drawn from various considerations.
	r  That is, says al Beidāwi, either without any previous notice, or 
after some warning given.

	5  Idem.		6  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.		7  See ibid. 
p. 67.		8  Al Beidāwi.

     but whoso shall accuse our signs of falsehood, a punishment shall fall on 
them, because they have done wickedly.
50	Say, I say not unto you, The treasures of GOD are in my power: neither 
do I say, I know the secrets of God: neither do I say unto you, Verily I am an 
angel: I follow only that which is revealed unto me.  Say, Shall the blind and 
the seeing be held equal? do ye not therefore consider?
     Preach it unto those who fear that they shall be assembled before their 
LORD: they shall have no patron nor intercessor, except him; that peradventure 
they may take heed to themselves.
     Drive not away those who call upon their LORD morning and evening, 
desiring to see his face;s it belongeth not unto thee to pass any judgment on 
them,t nor doth it belong unto them to pass any judgment on thee: therefore if 
thou drive them away, thou wilt become one of the unjust.
     Thus have we proved some part of them by other part, that they may say, 
Are these the people among us unto whom GOD hath been gracious?u  Doth not GOD 
most truly know those who are thankful?
     And when they who believe in our signs shall come unto thee, say, Peace 
be upon you.  Your LORD hath prescribed unto himself mercy; so whoever among 
you worketh evil through ignorance, and afterwards repenteth and amendeth; 
unto him will he surely be gracious and merciful.
     Thus have we distinctly propounded our signs, that the path of the wicked 
might be made known.
     Say, Verily I am forbidden to worship the false deities which ye invoke, 
besides GOD.  Say, I will not follow your desires; for then should I err, 
neither should I be one of those who are rightly directed.
     Say, I behave according to the plain declaration, which I have received 
from my LORD; but ye have forged lies concerning him.  That which ye desire 
should be hastened, is not in my power;x judgment belongeth only unto GOD; he 
will determine the truth; and he is the best discerner.
     Say, If what ye desire should be hastened were in my power, the matter 
had been determined between me and you:y but GOD well knoweth the unjust.

	s  These words were occasioned when the Koreish desired Mohammed not to 
admit the poor or more inferior people, such as Ammār, Soheib, Khobbāb, and 
Salmān, into his company, pretending that then they would come and discourse 
with him; but he refusing to turn away any believers, they insisted at least 
that he should order them to rise up and withdraw when they came, which he 
agreed to do.  Others say that the chief men of Mecca expelled all the poor 
out of their city, bidding them go to Mohammed; which they did, and offered to 
embrace his religion; but he made some difficulty to receive them, suspecting 
their motive to be necessity, and not real conviction;1 whereupon this passage 
was revealed.
	t  i.e., Rashly to decide whether their intentions be sincere or not; 
since thou canst not know their heart, and their faith may possibly be more 
firm than that of those who would persuade thee to discard them.
	u  That is to say, the noble by those of mean extraction, and the rich 
by the poor; in that GOD chose to call the latter to the faith before the 
	x  This passage is an answer to the audacious defiances of the infidels, 
who bad Mohammed, if he were a true prophet, to call for a shower of stones 
from heaven, or some other sudden and miraculous punishment, to destroy them.3
	y  For I should ere now have destroyed you, out of zeal for GOD'S 
honour, had it been in my power.4

	1  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.		2  Al Beidāwi.		3  Idem.	
	4  Idem.

     With him are the keys of the secret things; none knoweth them besides 
himself: he knoweth that which is on the dry land and in the sea; there 
falleth no leaf, but he knoweth it; neither is there a single grain in the 
dark parts of the earth, neither a green thing, nor a dry thing, but it is 
written in the perspicuous book.z
60	It is he who causeth you to sleep by night, and knoweth what ye merit by 
day; he also awaketh you therein, that the prefixed term of your lives may be 
fulfilled; then unto him shall ye return, and he shall declare unto you that 
which ye have wrought.
     He is supreme over his servants, and sendeth the guardian angels to watch 
over you,a until, when death overtaketh one of you, our messengersb cause him 
to die: and they will not neglect our commands.
     Afterwards shall they return unto GOD, their true LORD: doth not judgment 
belong unto him?  he is the most quick in taking an account.c
     Say, Who delivereth you from the darknessd of the land, and of the sea, 
when ye call upon him humbly and in private, saying, Verily if thou deliver 
use from these dangers, we will surely be thankful?
     Say, GOD delivereth you from them, and from every grief of mind; yet 
afterwards ye give him companions.f
     Say, He is able to send on you a punishment from above you,g or from 
under your feet,h or to engage you in dissension, and to make some of you 
taste the violence of others.  Observe how variously we show forth our signs, 
that peradventure they may understand.
     This people hath accused the revelation which thou hast brought of 
falsehood, although it be the truth.  Say, I am not a guardian over you: every 
prophecy hath its fixed time of accomplishment; and he will hereafter know it.
     When thou seest those who are engaged in cavilling at, or ridiculing our 
signs, depart from them, until they be engaged in some other discourse: and if 
Satan cause thee to forget this precept, do not sit with the ungodly people 
after recollection.
     They who fear God are not at all accountable for them, but their duty is 
to remember that they may take heed to themselves.i
     Abandon those who make their religion a sport and a jest; and whom the 
present life hath deceived: and admonish them by the Koran, that a soul 
becometh liable to destruction for that which it committeth: it shall have no 
patron nor intercessor besides GOD: and if it could pay the utmost price of 
redemption, it would not be accepted from it.  They who are delivered over to 
perdition for that which they have committed shall have boiling water to 
drink, and shall suffer a grievous punishment, because they have disbelieved.

	z  i.e., The preserved table, or register of GOD'S decrees.
	a  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.
	b  That is, the angel of death and his assistants.5
	c  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.
	d  That is, the dangers and distresses.
	e  The Cufic copies read it in the third person, if he deliver us, &c.
	f  Returning to your old idolatry.
	g  That is, by storms from heaven, as he destroyed the unbelieving 
people of Noah, and of Lot, and the army of Abraha, the lord of the elephant.1
	h  Either by drowning you, as he did Pharaoh and his host, or causing 
the earth to open and swallow you up, as happened to Korah, or (as the 
Mohammedans name him) Karun.2
	i  And therefore need not be troubled at the indecent and impious talk 
of the infidels, provided they take care not to be infected by them.  When the 
preceding passage was revealed, the Moslems told their prophet that if they 
were obliged to rise up whenever the idolaters spoke irreverently of the 
Korān, they could never sit quietly in the temple, nor perform their devotions 
there; whereupon these words were added.3

	5  See the Prelim. Disc. Sec. IV.		1  Al Beidāwi.		2  
Idem.		3  Idem, Jallalo'ddin.

70	Say, Shall we call upon that, besides GOD, which can neither profit us, 
nor hurt us? and shall we turn back on our heels, after that GOD hath directed 
us; like him whom the devils have infatuated, wandering amazedly in the earth, 
and yet having companions who call him into the true direction, saying, Come 
unto us?  Say, the direction of GOD is the true direction; we are commanded to 
resign ourselves unto the LORD of all creatures;
     and it is also commanded us, saying, Observe the stated times of prayer, 
and fear him; for it is he before whom ye shall be assembled.
     It is he who hath created the heavens and the earth in truth; and 
whenever he saith unto a thing, Be, it is.
     His word is the truth; and his will be the kingdom on the day whereon the 
trumpet shall be sounded:k he knoweth whatever is secret, and whatever is 
public; he is the wise, the knowing.
     Call to mind when Abraham said unto his father Azer,l Dost thou take 
images for gods?m  Verily I perceive that thou and thy people are in a 
manifest error.
     And thus did we show unto Abraham the kingdom of heaven and earth, that 
he might become one of those who firmly believe.n
     And when the night overshadowed him, he saw a star, and he said, This is 
my LORD;o but when it set, he said, I like not gods which set.

	k  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. IV.
	l  This is the name which the Mohammedans give to Abraham's father, 
named in scripture Terah.  However, some of their writers pretend that Azer 
was the son of Terah,1 and D'Herbelot says that the Arabs always distinguish 
them in their genealogies as different persons; but that because Abraham was 
the son of Terah according to Moses, it is therefore supposed (by European 
writers) that Terah is the same with the Azer of the Arabs.2  How true this 
observation may be in relation to some authors, I cannot say, but I am sure it 
cannot be true of all; for several Arab and Turkish writers expressly make 
Azer and Terah the same person.3  Azer, in ancient times, was the name of the 
planet Mars, and the month of March was so called by the most ancient 
Persians; for the word originally signifying fire (as it still does,) it was 
therefore given by them and the Chaldeans to that planet,4 which partaking, as 
was supposed, of a fiery nature, was acknowledged by the Chaldeans and 
Assyrians as a god or planetary deity, whom in old times they worshipped under 
the form of a pillar: whence Azer became a name among the nobility, who 
esteemed it honourable to be denominated from their gods,5 and is found in the 
composition of several Babylonish names.  For these reasons a learned author 
supposes Azer to have been the heathen name of Terah, and that the other was 
given him on his conversion.6  Al Beidāwi confirms this conjecture, saying 
that Azer was the name of the idol which he worshipped.  It may be observed 
that Abraham's father is also called Zarah in the Talmud and Athar by 
	m  That Azer, or Terah, was an idolater is allowed on all hands; nor can 
it be denied, since he is expressly said in scripture to have served strange 
gods.7  The eastern authors unanimously agree that he was a statuary, or 
carver of idols; and he is represented as the first who made images of clay, 
pictures only having been in use before,8 and taught that they were to be 
adored as gods.9  However, we are told his employment was a very honourable 
one,10 and that he was a great lord, and in high favour with Nimrod, whose 
son-in-law he was,11 because he made his idols for him, and was excellent in 
his art.  Some of the Rabbins say Terah was a priest, and chief of the 
	n  That is, we gave him a right apprehension of the government of the 
world and of the heavenly bodies, that he might know them all to be ruled by 
GOD, by putting him on making the following reflections.

	1  Tarīkh Montakhab, apud D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. p. 12.		2  
D'Herbel. ibid.		3  Al Beidāwi, Jallalo'ddin, Yahya, Ebn Shohnah, Mirat 
Kainat, &c.  Vide etiam Pharhang Jehang-hiri, apud Hyde de Rel. Vet. Persar. 
p. 68.		4  Hyde, ibid. p. 63.		5  Idem, ibid. p. 64.	
	6  Idem, ibid. p. 62.		7  Josh. xxiv. 2, 14.		8  Epiphan. 
adv. Hęr. l. r, p. 7, 8.
9  Suidas in Lexico, voce ?epśx.		10  Vide Hyde, ubi sup. p. 63.	
	11  D'Herbel. ubi sup.		12 Shalshel. hakkab. p. 94.

     And when he saw the moon rising, he said, This is my LORD; but when he 
saw it set, he said, Verily if my LORD direct me not, I shall become one of 
the people who go astray.
     And when he saw the sun rising, he said, This is my LORD, this is the 
greatest; but when it set, he said, O my people, verily I am clear of that 
which ye associate with God:
     I direct my face unto him who hath created the heavens and the earth; I 
am orthodox, and am not one of the idolaters.
80	And his people disputed with him: and he said, Will ye dispute with me 
concerning GOD? since he hath now directed me, and I fear not that which ye 
associate with him, unless that my LORD willeth a thing; for my LORD 
comprehendeth all things by his knowledge:p will ye not therefore consider?
     And how should I fear that which ye associate with God, since ye fear not 
to have associated with GOD that concerning which he hath sent down unto you 
no authority? which therefore of the two parties is the more safe, if ye 
understand aright?
     They who believe, and clothe not their faith with injustice,q they shall 
enjoy security, and they are rightly directed.
     And this is our argument wherewith we furnished Abraham that he might 
make use of it against his people: we exalt unto degrees of wisdom and 
knowledge whom we please; for thy LORD is wise and knowing.
     And we gave unto them Isaac and Jacob; we directed them both: and Noah 
had we before directed, and of his posterityr David and Solomon; and Job,s and 
Joseph, and Moses, and Aaron: thus do we reward the righteous:
     and Zacharias, and John, and Jesus, and Elias;t all of them were upright 
     and Ismael, and Elisha,u and Jonas,u and Lot;y all these have we favored 
above the rest of the world;

	o  Since Abraham's parents were idolaters, it seems to be a necessary 
consequence that himself was one also in his younger years; the scripture not 
obscurely intimates as much,1 and the Jews themselves acknowledge it.2  At 
what age he came to the knowledge of the true God and left idolatry, opinions 
are various.  Some Jewish writers tell us he was then but three years old,3 
and the Mohammedans likewise suppose him very young, and that he asked his 
father and mother several shrewd questions when a child.4  Others, however, 
allow him to have been a middle-aged man at that time.5  Maimonides, in 
particular, and R. Abraham Zacuth think him to have been forty years old, 
which age is also mentioned in the Korān.  But the general opinion of the 
Mohammedans is that he was about fifteen or sixteen.6  As the religion wherein 
Abraham was educated was the Sabian, which consisted chiefly in the worship of 
the heavenly bodies,7 he is introduced examining their nature and properties, 
to see whether they had a right to the worship which was paid them or not; and 
the first which he observed was the planet Venus, or, as others will have it, 
Jupiter.8  This method of Abraham's attaining to the knowledge of the supreme 
Creator of all things, is conformable to what Josephus writes, viz.: That he 
drew his notions from the changes which he had observed in the earth and the 
sea, and in the sun and the moon, and the rest of the celestial bodies; 
concluding that they were subject to the command of a superior power, to whom 
alone all honour and thanks are due.9  The story itself is certainly taken 
from the Talmud.10  Some of the commentators, however, suppose this reasoning 
of Abraham with himself was not the first means of his conversion, but that he 
used it only by way of argument to convince the idolaters among whom he then 
	p  That is, I am not afraid of your false gods, which cannot hurt me, 
except GOD permitteth it, or is pleased to afflict me himself.
	q  By injustice, in this place, the commentators understand idolatry, or 
open rebellion against GOD.
	r  Some refer the relative his to Abraham, the person chiefly spoken of 
in this passage; some to Noah, the next antecedent, because Jonas and Lot were 
not (say they) of Abraham's seed; and others suppose the persons named in this 
and the next verse are to be understood as the descendants of Abraham, and 
those in the following verse as those of Noah.11
	s  The Mohammedans say he was of the race of Esau.  See chapters 21 and 
	t  See chapter 37.
	u  This prophet was the successor of Elias, and, as the commentators 
will have it, the son of Okhtūb, though the scripture makes him the son of 
	x  See chapters 10, 21, and 37.
	y  See chapter 7, &c.

	1  Vide Josh. xxiv. 2, 14, and Hyde, ubi sup. p. 59.			2  
Joseph. Ant. l. I, c. 7.  Maimon. More Nev. part iii. c. 29, et Yad Hazzak. de 
Id. c. I, &c.		3  Tanchuma, Talmud, Nedarim, 32, I, et apud Maimon.  
Yad Hazz. ubi sup.		4  Vide D'Herbel. Bibl. Orient. Art. Abraham.	
	5  Maimon. ubi sup.  R. Abr. Zacuth in Sefer Juchasin, Shalshel. hakkab, 
&c.		6  Vide Hyde, ubi sup. p. 60, 61, et Hotting. Smegma Orient. p. 
290, &c.  Genebr. in Chron.		7  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. I. p. 11.	
	8  Al Beidāwi.		9  Joseph. Ant. l. I, c. 7.		10  R.  
Bechai, in Midrash.  Vide Bartolocc. Bibl. Rabb. part i. p. 640.		11  Al 

     and also divers of their fathers, and their issue, and their brethren; 
and we chose them, and directed them into the right way.
     This is the direction of GOD, he directeth thereby such of his servants 
as he pleaseth; but if they had been guilty of idolatry, that which they 
wrought would have become utterly fruitless unto them.
     Those were the persons unto whom we gave the scripture, and wisdom, and 
prophecy; but if thesez believe not therein, we will commit the care of them 
to a people who shall not disbelieve the same.
90	Those were the persons whom GOD hath directed, therefore follow their 
direction.  Say unto the inhabitants of Mecca, I ask of you no recompense for 
preaching the Koran; it is no other than an admonition unto all creatures.
     They make not a due estimation of GOD,a when they say, GOD hath not sent 
down unto man anything at all:b Say, Who sent down the book which Moses 
brought, a light and a direction unto men; which ye transcribe on papers, 
whereof ye publish some part, and great part whereof ye conceal? and ye have 
been taught by Mohammed what ye knew not, neither your fathers.  Say, GOD sent 
it down: then leave them to amuse themselves with their vain discourse.
     This book which we have sent down is blessed; confirming that which was 
revealed before it; and is delivered unto thee that thou mayest preach it unto 
the metropolis of Mecca and to those who are round about it.  And they who 
believe in the next life will believe therein, and they will diligently 
observe their times of prayer.
     Who is more wicked than he who forgeth a lie concerning GOD?c or saith 
This was revealed unto me; when nothing hath been revealed unto him?d and who 
saith, I will produce a revelation like unto that which GOD hath sent down?e  
If thou didst see when the ungodly are in the pangs of death, and the angelsf 
reach out their hands saying, Cast forth your souls; this day shall ye receive 
an ignominious punishment for that which ye have falsely spoken concerning 
GOD; and because ye have proudly rejected his signs.

	z  That is, the Koreish.1
	a  That is, they know him not truly, nor have just notions of his 
goodness and mercy towards man.  The persons here meant, according to some 
commentators, are the Jews, and according to others, the idolaters.2
	This verse and the two next, as Jallalo'ddin thinks, were revealed at 
	b  By these words the Jews (if they were the persons meant) chiefly 
intended to deny the Korān to be of divine revelation, though they might in 
strictness insist that GOD never revealed, or sent down, as the Korān 
expresses it, any real composition or material writing from heaven in the 
manner that Mohammed pretended his revelations were delivered,3 if we except 
only the Decalogue, GOD having left to the inspired penmen not only the labour 
of writing, but the liberty, in a great measure at least, of putting the 
truths into their own words and manner of expression.
	c  Falsely pretending to have received revelations from him, as did 
Moselama, al Aswad al Ansi, and others.
	d  As did Abda'llah Ebn Saad Ebn Abi Sarah, who for some time was the 
prophet's amanuensis, and when these words were dictated to him as revealed, 
viz., We created man of a purer kind of clay, &c.,4 cried out, by way of 
admiration, Blessed be GOD the best Creator! and being ordered by Mohammed to 
write these words down also, as part of the inspired passage, began to think 
himself as great a prophet as his master.5  Whereupon he took upon himself to 
corrupt and alter the Korān according to his own fancy, and at length 
apostatizing, was one of the ten who were proscribed at the taking of Mecca,6 
and narrowly escaped with life on his recantation, by the interposition of 
Othmān Ebn Affįn, whose foster-brother he was.7
	e  For some Arabs, it seems, had the vanity to imagine, and gave out, 
that, if they pleased, they could write a book nothing inferior to the Korān.
	f  See before, p. 94, note b.

	1  Idem.		2  Idem.		3  See the Prelim. Disc. Sect. III. 
p. 50, &c.		4  Kor. c. 23.
5  Al Beidāwi.		6  See the Prelim. Disc. p. 43.		7  Vide 
Abulfeda, Vit. Moh. p. 109.

     And now are ye come unto us alone,g as we created you at first,h and ye 
have left that which we had bestowed on you, behind your backs; neither do we 
see with you your intercessors,i whom ye thought to have been partners with 
God among you: now is the relation between you cut off, and what ye imagined 
hath deceived you.k
     GOD causeth the grain and the date-stone to put forth: he bringeth forth 
the living from the dead, and he bringeth forth the dead from the living.l  
This is GOD.  Why therefore are ye turned away from him?
     He causeth the morning to appear; and hath ordained the night for rest, 
and the sun and the moon for the computing of time.  This is the disposition 
of the mighty, the wise God.
     It is he who hath ordained the stars for you, that ye may be directed 
thereby in the darkness of the land and of the sea.  We have clearly shown 
forth our signs, unto people who understand.
     It is he who hath produced you from one soul; and hath provided for you a 
sure receptacle and a repository.m  We have clearly shown forth our signs, 
unto people who are wise.
     It is he who sendeth down water from heaven, and we have thereby produced 
the springing buds of all things, and have thereout produced the green thing, 
from which we produce the grain growing in rows, and palm-trees from whose 
branches proceed clusters of dates hanging close together; and gardens of 
grapes, and olives, and pomegranates, both like and unlike to one another.  
Look on their fruits, when they bear fruit, and their growing to maturity.  
Verily herein are signs, unto people who believe.
100	Yet they have set up the geniin as partners with GOD, although he 
created them: and they have falsely attributed unto him sons and daughters,o 
without knowledge.  Praise be unto him; and far be that from him which they 
attribute unto him!
     He is the maker of heaven and earth: how should he have issue since he 
hath no consort? he hath created all things, and he is omniscient.
     This is GOD your LORD; there is no GOD but he, the creator of all things; 
therefore serve him: for he taketh care of all things.
     The sight comprehendeth him not, but he comprehendeth the sight; he is 
the gracious,p the wise.
     Now have evident demonstrations come unto you from your LORD; whoso seeth 
them, the advantage thereof will redound to his own soul: and whoso is 
wilfully blind, the consequence will be to himself.  I am not a keeper over 
     Thus do we variously explain our signs; that they may say, Thou hast 
studied diligently;q and that we may declare them unto people of 
     Follow that which hath been revealed unto thee from thy LORD; there is no 
GOD but he: retire therefore from the idolaters.

	g  That is, without your wealth, your children, or your friends, which 
ye so much depended on in your lifetime.
	h  i.e., Naked and helpless.
	  Or false gods.
	k  Concerning the intercession of your idols, or the disbelief of future 
rewards and punishments.
	l  See chapter 3, p. 34.
	m  Namely, in the loins of your fathers, and the wombs of your mothers.1
	n  This word signifies properly the genus of rational, invisible beings, 
whether angels, devils, or that intermediate species usually called genii.  
Some of the commentators therefore, in this place, understand the angels, whom 
the pagan Arabs worshipped; and others the devils, either because they became 
their servants by adoring idols at their instigation, or else because, 
according to the Magian system, they looked on the devil as a sort of creator, 
making him the author and principle of all evil, and GOD the author of good 
	o  See the Prelim. Discourse, p. 14 and 30.
	p  Or, as the word may be translated, the incomprehensible.3
	q  That is, Thou hast been instructed by the Jews and Christians in 
these matters, and only retailest to us what thou hast learned of them.  For 
this the infidels objected to Mohammed, thinking it impossible for him to 
discourse on subjects of so high a nature, and in so clear and pertinent a 
manner, without being well versed in the doctrines and sacred writings of 
those people.

			1  Al Beidāwi.		2  Idem.		3  Idem.

     If GOD had so pleased, they had not been guilty of idolatry. We have not 
appointed thee a keeper over them; neither art thou a guardian over them.
     Revile not the idols which they invoke besides GOD, lest they maliciously 
revile GOD, without knowledge.  Thus have we prepared for every nation their 
works: hereafter unto GOD shall they return, and he shall declare unto them 
that which they have done.
     They have sworn by GOD, by the most solemn oath, that if a sign came unto 
them, they would certainly believe therein: Say, Verily signs are in the power 
of GOD alone; and he permitteth you not to understand, that when they come, 
they will not believe.r
110	And we will turn aside their hearts and their sight from the truth, as 
they believed not thereins the first time; and we will leave them to wander in 
their error.
     And though we had sent down angels unto them, and the dead had spoken 
unto them, and we had gathered together before them all things in one view;t 
they would not have believed, unless GOD had so pleased: but the greater part 
of them know it not.
     Thus have we appointed unto every prophet an enemy; the devils of men, 
and of genii: who privately suggest the one to the other specious discourses 
to deceive; but if thy LORD pleased, they would not have done it.  Therefore 
leave them, and that which they have falsely imagined;
     and let the hearts of those be inclined thereto, who believe not in the 
life to come; and let them please themselves therein, and let them gain that 
which they are gaining.
     Shall I seek after any other judge besides GOD to judge between us?  It 
is he who hath sent down unto you the book of the Koran distinguishing between 
good and evil; and they to whom we gave the scripture know that it is sent 
down from thy LORD, with truth.  Be not therefore one of those who doubt 
     The words of thy LORD are perfect, in truth and justice; there is none 
who can change his words:u he both heareth and knoweth.
     But if thou obey the greater part of them who are in the earth, they will 
lead thee aside from the path of GOD: they follow an uncertain opinion only,x 
and speak nothing but lies;
     verily thy LORD well knoweth those who go astray from his path, and well 
knoweth those who are rightly directed.
     Eat of that whereon the name of GOD hath been commemorated,y if ye 
believe in his signs:
     and why do ye not eat of that whereon the name of GOD hath been 
commemorated? since he hath plainly declared unto you what he hath forbidden 
you; except that which ye be compelled to eat of by necessity; many lead 
others into error, because of their appetites, being void of knowledge; but 
thy LORD well knoweth who are the transgressors.

	r  In this passage Mohammed endeavours to excuse his inability of 
working a miracle, as had been demanded of him; declaring that GOD did not 
think fit to comply with their desires; and that if he had so thought fit, yet 
it had been in vain, because if they were not convinced by the Korān, they 
would not be convinced by the greatest miracle.4
	s  i.e., In the Korān.
	t  For the Meccans required that Mohammed should either show them an 
angel descending from heaven in their sight, or raise their dead fathers, that 
they might discourse with them, or prevail on GOD and his angels to appear to 
them in a body.
	u  Some interpret this of the immutability of GOD'S decree, and the 
certainty of his threats and promises; others, of his particular promise to 
preserve the Korān from any such alterations or corruptions as they imagine to 
have happened to the Pentateuch and the Gospel;1 and others, of the 
unalterable duration of the Mohammedan law, which they hold is to last till 
the end of the world, there being no other prophet, law, or dispensation to be 
expected after it.
	x  Imagining that the true religion was that which their idolatrous 
ancestors professed.
	y  See chap. 2, p. 18, and chap. 5, p. 73.

		4  Confer Luke xvi. 31.		1  See the Prelim. Disc. p. 58, and 
Kor. c. 15.

120	Leave both the outside of iniquity and inside thereof:z for they who 
commit iniquity shall receive the reward of that which they shall have gained.
     Eat not therefore of that whereon the name of GOD hath not been 
commemorated; for this is certainly wickedness: but the devils will suggest 
unto their friends, they they dispute with you concerning this precept; but if 
ye obey them, ye are surely idolaters.
     Shall he who hath been dead, and whom we have restored unto life, and 
unto whom we have ordained a light, whereby he may walk among men, be as he 
whose similitude is in darkness, from whence he shall not come forth?a  Thus 
was that which the infidels are doing prepared for them.
     And thus have we placed in every city chief leaders of the wicked men 
thereof,b that they may act deceitfully therein; but they shall act 
deceitfully against their own souls only; and they know it not.
     And when a signc cometh unto them, they say, We will by no means believe 
until a revelation be brought unto us, like unto that which hath been 
delivered unto the messengers of GOD.d  GOD best knoweth whom he will appoint 
for his messenger.e  Vileness in the sight of GOD shall fall upon those who 
deal w